DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state House of Representatives is poised to vote on a bill decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana.
The legislation to be voted on Tuesday makes possession of an ounce or less of marijuana a civil offense punishable by a fine of $100, rather than a criminal offense.
Smoking marijuana in an area accessible to the public or in a moving vehicle would be a criminal misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $200 and imprisonment of up to five days.
Supporters of the bill say it is an attempt to prevent otherwise law-abiding pot smokers from ending up with criminal records that could jeopardize their futures, including chances for employment. They also argue that minorities are disproportionately affected by current drug laws.
Law enforcement groups oppose the measure.