Louisianans for Responsible Reform
For Immediate Release
Monday, March 24, 2014
Four days after Louisianans for Responsible Reform asked the Louisiana District Attorneys Association to explain its opposition to a Senate bill that will reduce jail time for low-level marijuana offenses, the silence is deafening - and the questions are mounting.
This morning, LRR Legislative Adviser Greg Thompson appeared on Talk 107.3 FM in Baton Rouge and host Brian Haldane asked the same question.
"Senate Bill 323 is a bipartisan effort to reduce costs to Louisiana taxpayers and help keep families intact, but the LDAA has yet to explain its announced opposition to the bill," Thompson said. "The bill doesn't legalize marijuana. It doesn't even 'decriminalize' it. It just says that no one caught smoking a joint should spend five to 20 years in prison and that Louisiana taxpayers shouldn't spend the $20 million a year we're currently spending on these offenses."
The bill is co-authored by Sen. Robert Adley (R-Benton) and Sen. J.P. Morrell (D-New Orleans).
A poll conducted last summer shows a majority of Louisianans support the elimination of harsh penalties for simple marijuana possession. Organizations as diverse as Blueprint Louisiana, the Pelican Policy Institute, the ACLU, numerous clergy and plenty of regular citizens are onboard.
"This question is going to arise again and again, and the LDAA needs to answer for its position," Thompson said. "LRR can justify and explain our ideas, concerns and goals. They should, too."