Norwood residents vote for new law decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana

Police lieutenant says local department can still enforce state laws when it comes to marijuana

New Norwood marijuana law

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Locally, one of the issues receiving post-election buzz is a new marijuana law that throws out fines and jail time in Norwood.

Under the new law, residents will not be fined or spend time in jail for possessing under 200 grams of marijuana. It was a three-year ballot fight by a grassroots organization in Norwood, and Tuesday more than 70 percent of voters cast ballots in favor of it.

“I think a lot of people are afraid that every drug dealer in the greater Cincinnati area is going to move to Norwood. That is just not going to happen,” said Amy Wolfinbarger, who founded Sensible Norwood, the movement that made the push for the new law.

She said young adults who want to try it out should pick pot over stronger narcotics.

”If you’re gong to make a conscious choice to experiment with drugs, please choose a drug like cannabis over opioids or prescription medications that may be in your parents' or grandparents' medicine cabinet," said Wolfinbarger.

Norwood police Lt. Ron Murphy says the new ordinance makes the job tougher for his department.

“I don’t agree that marijuana is a good thing. It does have some effects still, still there’s some violence that occurs with marijuana use, with trafficking and things like that," he said.

Murphy said his department can still enforce state laws when it comes to marijuana. That means Norwood police can still confiscate any pot they find and use state laws to prosecute.

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