Upper Darby Second Town in Delaware County to Decriminalize Marijuana Possession

David Bjorkgren

Upper Darby became the second municipality in Delaware County to decriminalize possession of a small amount of marijuana, writes Pete Bannan for the Daily Times.

Folcroft approved a similar ordinance back in late July.

Upper Darby Council passed an ordinance Aug. 19 that made it a summary offense, subject to a fine only, for possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana and eight grams or less of hashish or marijuana paraphernalia.

Previously, possession of a small amount of marijuana could include 90 days in jail and a criminal record.

“It’s a long time coming. It has been a big issue, especially for people of color,” said Michelle Billups, one of the council members who pushed for the change. “I believe our police can use their resources on more serious matters.”

The new ordinance has the backing of Upper Darby Police and its superintendent, Tim Bernhardt, who sees it as a way to keep young people out of the criminal system but still hold them responsible for marijuana possession.

The new ordinance does not apply to someone carrying marijuana with the intent to deal, Bernhardt added.

Read more about Upper Darby’s decision to decriminalize the possession of a small amount of marijuana here.

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