Marijuana Discussion Prompts DeKalb Alderman ‘Why Don’t we Just Make it Legal Here’?
The topic of pot was "in the air' at Monday Night's DeKalb City Council Meeting, and the question was posed "can we legalize it"?
The DeKalb City Council discussed lowering fines for those caught with marijuana within the city limits to conform with a new state law that mandates a change in the fine structure in the State of Illinois.
The Daily Chronicle reports that on July 29, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner signed a law that would make possessing less than 10 grams of marijuana punishable by a fine of up to $200. The law makes possession a civil penalty, rather than a criminal penalty.
In Monday night's discussion, many eyebrows were raised when DeKalb Alderman Dave Baker asked the city attorney at the meeting
"Why can't we, as home rule, can we do to be totally progressive to make DeKalb and NIU, a safe haven, so you don't end up with a criminal record. How far can we push it? Why don't we just make it legal here?
The City Attorney was not able to not able to answer the question
Alderman Baker pointed out that he has friends in Colorado who have seen their property values go up by 40% over the past two years. Colorado is one of several states that have legalized the possession and use on marijuana.
The State of Colorado along with other states that permit the use of cannabis reap many tax benefits from the sale and manufacture of marijuana.
Here is video of the discussion as it went down on Monday night.
If DeKalb were able legalize marijuana, it would be the first community in Illinois to do so. However, it is unclear if Illinois state law would allow this.