Dallas loves to copy Houston.
At tomorrow’s City Council meeting five hours up 45, Dallas Council members will consider a cite-and-release marijuana measure, where anyone possessing less than 4 ounces of pot will get a ticket instead of going to jail.
Harris County enacted a similar program in March, under which persons caught with less than 4 ounces of weed will be able to attend a decision-making class instead of receiving a citation or record of any kind for the misdemeanor possession.
Authorities are confident the changes will save Houston money and other valuable resources.
With a smaller population than Houston, Dallas’ concentrated rate of conservative beliefs may be the reason changes to the city’s marijuana laws have not been enacted before.
A related proposal was rejected in 2016, despite a significant portion of arrests in Dallas being related to marijuana monopolizing authorities’ time and availability to investigate and defend against violent crimes.
Harris County DA Kim Ogg estimated HPD officers spent four hours on average processing marijuana-related crimes before March 1.
The newly-elected prosecutor also maintains the majority of Houston’s marijuana prosecutions from previous years were nonviolent and cost the city more than $10 million in resources she feels would be better spent directed toward preventing violent crimes, like rape and burglary.
The arguments are largely the same over in Dallas, and at least five of the 14 seated members recently signaled their position for a permanent readjustment to their city’s pot laws.
All of Texas will be watching tomorrow’s highly anticipated meeting.
Keep blazing a trail, y’all!