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North Carolina: Bill Introduced To Decriminalize Marijuana And Expunge Previous Convictions


north carolina marijuana decriminalization hb 637House Bill 637, which lowers penalties for minor marijuana possession offenses, has been introduced in the North Carolina General Assembly. The measure has been referred to the House Judiciary Subcommittee B, but has yet to be scheduled for a hearing.

HB 637 reduces penalties regarding the possession of up to an ounce of marijuana to a fine-only civil infraction. Those found guilty of possessing between one ounce and one and a half ounce of marijuana would face a Class 3 Misdemeanor.

Under current law, the possession of 1/2 ounce or less of marijuana is a criminal misdemeanor punishable by a fine of $200 and a suspended jail sentence. The possession of 1/2 ounce to 1 ounce of marijuana is punishable by up to 45 days in prison and a $1,000 fine. The possession of over one and a half ounce of marijuana is a felony punishable by up to 8 months in prison and $1,000 fine.

House Bill 637 also allows for those with marijuana convictions to apply to have their conviction expunged, as long as they were not previously convicted of another misdemeanor or felony. You can view the full text of this measure here.

According to survey data published by Public Policy Polling, 56% of North Carolinians believe that marijuana possession should be a fine-only offense.

For further information you can visit North Carolina NORML’s website here or their Facebook page here. NORML will keep you updated as this legislation moves forward.

Source: NORML - make a donation


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Johnny Green


  1. I feel like make it legal y’all go head and sell it like the other states and everybody be happy y’all really messing up a lot of ppl bad names and messing up ppl records for Petty shit I’m done now let’s smoke up and be happy -Raheem Edwards

  2. to any body that thinks this is no change, yes this is a BIG change. under current law on top of the fine, you get court which comes with court cost ( around $130), atleast 12 months probation, community service which cost you another $250, and drug classes which last time i went was i think 5 or 6 hundred. so yes just a fine is a HELL OF A LOT BETTER.

  3. Thanks. So many articles about this get the details wrong, claiming under an ounce would still be a misdemeanor, etc. I really appreciate your detailed and accurate summary of the measure.

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