CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Nine house bills have been introduced among Texas lawmakers relating to marijuana reform.
That includes House Bill-99, which would stop most arrests for those caught with two ounces of marijuana or less and reduce the crime to a class C misdemeanor. Another bill, House Bill-439 would lower penalties for marijuana concentrates like edibles.
“I just don’t understand why it has to be an issue," says Tom Stewart. "Especially because the first time I was arrested I was 17 in Texas, I had three grams of weed with me and I was charged with felony of distribution.”
Owner of House of Hemp, Craig Bethards, says he was just at the state's capitol to advocate for marijuana legalization.
“Things have gotten better, there are options now but you can still go to jail for something less than this,” says Bethards.
“The biggest hope is to stop the massive arrests of marijuana possessors,” says marijuana law expert Kyle Hoelscher.
Hoelscher says 79% of Texas believes marijuana should be de-penalized.
“Texas arrest somewhere around 60,00 people every year for low level marijuana offenses and that’s something that costs tax payers," he says.
As of April 6, the cannabis decriminalization bill is still being discussed within the Texas legislature.
To stay updated on the status of the Texas marijuana reform bills visit, mpp.org.