On Thursday, the Health and Human Services Committee of the Saint Louis Board of Aldermen held a hearing on Alderman Shane Cohn's bill to reform the city's cannabis policies. Shane's proposal would make marijuana possession a municipal offense (i.e. like a traffic ticket) instead of a misdemeanor and protect medical marijuana patients, and it was extremely well-received at the meeting.
We had around a dozen supporters there -- which is a large number for a morning hearing -- and every member of the public who signed up to speak was in favor of the bill. Both the city's general counselor and the circuit attorney spoke in favor of the idea. Even the representative of the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse did not voice opposition to the idea. Finally, in his introduction to the bill, Alderman Cohn said that Show-Me Cannabis Regulation's 2012 statewide campaign was the inspiration for his decision to file the reform!
The committee will vote on a bill at the same time next Thursday. Shane said that he plans to introduce a somewhat amended bill based more closely on the reforms passed by Columbia voters in 2004 There won't be as much public input at that meeting, but if you can attend to show your support, please do! You can find details about that hearing on our Facebook event page.
We expect that the committee will approve the bill next Thursday, but after that it will go back to the full board of alderman and likely face a vote there either on February 1st or February 8th. That means we will need to identify supportive constituents in the wards of undecided aldermen and coordinate emails, phone calls, and office visits to ensure passage of the bill.
This project will require a tremendous amount of work, and we need your help to make it happen. That's why I am inviting you to support our reform efforts in Saint Louis by participating in our Reform in the River City Money Bomb next Wednesday, January 23rd. Thanks to investments from people like you, cannabis policy is now a common subject of debate in the state of Missouri, and we are on the verge of passing substantial reforms in its second largest city and the anchor of its largest metropolitan area. Reform in Saint Louis will send positive ripples across the state of Missouri and the entire nation!
We believe that if we can raise $2,000, we can provide this campaign with everything it will need to win. So please help us prevent the criminal prosecution of cannabis users in Saint Louis by investing with us this Wednesday!