By Anthony Martinelli

A marijuana expungement bill has officially become law in Maryland.

Senate Bill 949 was given approval by the House in April with a vote of 94 to 43; prior to that the measure passed the Senate with a unanimous 47 to 0 vote. Following inaction from Governor Larry Hogan, the legislation officially became law on Sunday, October 1st.

According to official language, Senate Bill 949 would allow for the expungement (removal) of a marijuana charge if “the person was convicted of possession of marijuana under §5–601 of the Criminal Law Article”. The measure initially required “that filing fees for petitions for expungement collected by the District Court be remitted to the Administrative Office of the Court be used only for a specified purpose”, but that was amended out in the House.

October 1, 2014 marked the start of a statewide policy in Maryland that decriminalized the possession of up to 10 grams of cannabis, which was previously an arrestable misdemeanor.

For the full text of Senate Bill 949, click here.

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