Voters in Ohio city OK measure decriminalizing marijuana

NEWARK, Ohio (AP) — Voters in central Ohio have approved a measure eliminating criminal penalties for possessing smaller amounts of marijuana.

The Columbus Dispatch reports that 53 percent of Newark voters approved decriminalizing possession of less than 200 grams of marijuana, about 7 ounces. The new law says possessing less than 200 grams in Newark is a minor misdemeanor subject to no fines, jail or probation.

Possession of less than 100 grams is a minor misdemeanor under Ohio law that could result in a fine and loss of driving privileges.

A backer of Newark’s law says it will allow police to concentrate on the city’s heroin and opiate problem. She says the measure addresses discrepancies between Newark and Ohio law.

Newark is a city of about 48,000 people 40 miles east of Columbus. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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