SACRAMENTO (AP) — Possessing up to an ounce of marijuana in California is now no more serious than getting a speeding ticket.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a bill late Thursday that reduces possession of an ounce or less of marijuana from a misdemeanor to an infraction.

The maximum punishment is a $100 fine.

Schwarzenegger said after signing Senate Bill 1449 that he does not support the decriminalization of marijuana but that the bill would save the state courts money.

Even as a misdemeanor, possession of up to an ounce of marijuana was still punishable only by a $100 and no jail time. But offenders faced arrest, a possible court appearance and a criminal record.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (35)
  1. Chewbacca says:

    That picture looks like a KING KONG strain.

  2. chewbacca says:

    This is probably one of the better bills Mr. Terminator has signed….Awesome…

  3. leeds says:

    i remember when CA arrested for a roach…lawyers, jail, the works…this is an major step…
    from “Another Grandma against drunk driving” + “Another Grandma for pot legalization” — get it?!?

  4. Big Budz says:

    this is a small step. marijuana needs to be legal and widely available to everyone in the USA! smoke ’em if you got ’em, AMERICA!

  5. Max Chinn says:

    Remember it still goes on your record. Now when your prospective employer see it what are your chances of getting the job when there are at least 20 other candidates.

    1. rj says:

      Felonys go on your record. Not misdemeanors and certainly not tickets. Nice try tho,.

    2. Red Man says:

      Your chances of getting a job are Quite good, Max.
      Sales jobs on Craigslist in LA calling for a cadidate who must have a medicinal marijuana prescription as a condition for employment! “Wrap your brain” around that fact, MAX!!!!

      Max, in Boston, where a similar “infraction” and fine ($100) is in effect, the local gov is SO DISORGANIZED that there is no enforcement at all if the “fine” is NOT PAID! So, Guess what???? NO ONE PAYS THE FINE NOW, EITHER!!!!!!!!!!!

      1. kevin says:

        Red Man…. what is a CADIDATE ? Perhaps you should lay off the pipe before you forget how to spell anything.

  6. KenF says:

    I wonder if Arnie lights up, leaves, and says ‘A-reefer-durchee !!’

  7. HemetGuy says:

    Whats next? Cocaine? If you can’t beat ’em then join ’em I guess (LOL)

  8. natalie rosas says:

    i saw a lady on ch 9 news say, “crack, heroine etc.. users started off with marijuana, well to that nice lil’ old lady, i’m a recovering crack cocaine addict AND I DID NOT START OFF WITH MARIJUANA!!” to legalize marijuana would help california come out of this so called budget deficit. i say so called, because all the major poloticians, beginning and ending with the governator, have outrageous salaries, the governator said he’d not collect a slary, yeah right, he’d not be in sacramento w/out a paycheck of some kind. plus all cities should be audited like the city of bell, for misappropriation of funds.

  9. Towley says:

    Hey hey hey… carry an ounce of weed everyday… you wanna high!

  10. Towley says:

    Hey hey hey… carry an ounce of weed everyday… you wanna get high?!

  11. Cliff A Romano says:

    You’re all Hitler. Grow up.

  12. STONER! says:


  13. 420 Ray says:

    Nice try Max Chinn, will not go on your record. You people against it are fighting a losing battle. Don’t try and tell me not to use weed because you don’t. I don’t tell you not to drink liquor or eat fast food. Responsible adults can enjoy the stuff and not bother you, so why do you care? Thank God for California!

  14. 420 NIG NOG says:

    ah man!! I only carry a pound with me everyday.

  15. vudu says:

    I hate the smell of weed or being anywhere near it, but his seems like a good first step to reducing budge issues and jail populations. But they had better make sure its regulated so as not to be a nuisance to others in public…… and since it is a mind altering drug like alcohol, i hope employers are still allowed to discriminate if they dont want a pothead employed.

    1. Me says:

      So let it be written,so let it be done!

  16. Doug says:

    Marijuana decriminalized, check that one off the list. Next up, cocaine, then meth, then……

  17. Yeah!!! Schwarzennger’s my new ‘bud!’

  18. Thurgood Marshall says:

    Doug, wake up and smell the pot! For you to even categorize weed with coke and meth is totally absurd. Let me guess, you also believe it is a gateway drug? Wake up man, refer madness is over. If you don’t like it then leave California. Just don’t go to Amsterdam as they saw the light many moons ago. I’ll light one up just for you buddy. Peace!

  19. Dave says:

    Marijuana is a drug made by rich aristocrats to make us normal people lazy so that we could never be able to take their money. Arnold is in that category and he will make it legal so that he can stay rich and we stay in the same level.

  20. puffpuff pass says:

    thanks Arnold

  21. tn says:

    Mark my words- Next up: Marijuana School. If you get caught with an ounce or less and you want it removed from your record, you may attend Refer School for 8 hours and listen to a ex-pothead comedian educate you on the effects and uses of pot. Then, there will be Internet Pot courses…

  22. p3 says:

    an infraction is still a crime by legal definition. if you fail to pay a fine for an infraction it becomes a misdemeanor and you will be subject to arrest etc as a result of your failure to pay the fine. the automatic fine with pot is exactly the same as the automatic fines for so called traffic violations; that is, they are bills of attainder; that is, fines that are imposed without judicial process. which is strictly forbidden by the constitution. yes they have been robbing us blind all these years by denying us of our due process rights in so called traffic court with judges acting as prosecutor and jury. lets put a stop to that b.s right now.
    only you can stand up for your rights and you can learn how to do it on the net.

  23. Brad says:

    What kind of trick is this? Government respecting individual freedom? You’ve got to be kidding. There’s big money in this for somebody.

  24. Kevin says:

    It’s still a crime. Just a different category. It’s an infraction and you can still be cited for it. It’s just considered an arrest unless you have no I.D. to prove who you are. Then you go to jail pending identification. BUT,,, YOU CAN BE CHARGED WITH TRANSPORTATION SHOULD YOU HAVE IT IN YOUR VEHICLE. That is still a misdemeanor and an arrest. Either way, cited or arrested, you lose your dope. Look up 11360 of the health and safetly code for Ca.

  25. kevin says:

    I love how quiet a few of the people in support of smoking dope can’t spell the big words but certainly have “Marijuana” spelled right all the timme.

  26. St.Herbal Of Remedies says:

    you can’t spell ‘quite’ and ‘time’
    correctly either .

  27. allenallen says:

    He did it to fool people into thinking they didn’t need to vote for Prop 19. Young people foolishly felt they had no interest in Prop 19 (enough to go out and vote).

    My prediction: It will be overturned within 12 months and back to business as normal. It’s just a Governor signing… the new guy can sign something else or revoke it in an instant.

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