Cannabis in Louisiana
Cannabis in Louisiana concerns the drug cannabis in Louisiana, United States, where it has been legal for medical use since 1991. However, cannabis remains illegal for recreational usage throughout the state. First time possession of the drug remains a criminal offense but was decriminalized statewide in 2015 to a $300 fine and/or 15 days in jail. Possession of marijuana has also been decriminalized in the cities of New Orleans and Baton Rouge.
Reduction of criminal penalties (2015)
On June 30, 2015, Governor Bobby Jindal signed SB 143, which significantly reduced penalties for possession of cannabis. Under the bill, first time possession is punishable by a $300 fine and 15 days in jail, a second offense by up to a $1,000 fine and six months in jail, a third offense by up a $2,500 fine and up to two years in jail, and fourth or subsequent offenses by up to a $5,000 fine and eight years in prison.
Medical cannabis (2015)
On June 30, 2015, Governor Bobby Jindal also signed HB 149, which sets up a framework for dispensing marijuana for medical purposes. It is expected to take until the Summer of 2019[needs update] until the structures are in place to dispense medical cannabis to any patients. Medical Marijuana is currently dispensed in Louisiana.
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