Georgia city to consider decriminalization of marijuana possession

Gabe Thomas

The DeKalb county city of Clarkston is looking to become the first Georgia city to decriminalize marijuana.

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Public Safety committee in Clarkston is meeting this month to discuss to whether to make marijuana possession of less than an ounce a citation only offense, similar to normal traffic violations.

A similar effort in Athens failed to gain traction late last year when the city attorney came to the conclusion that state laws that make the possession of any amount of marijuana a misdemeanor offense overrule local laws.

Clarkston mayor Ted Terry said the city is prepared to argue it has “concurrent jurisdiction” with the state over low-level drug offenses. Concurrent jurisdiction, when two courts have jurisdiction over a jurisdiction, would give the city the right to pick where those accused of having less than an ounce of marijuana are tried.