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STEVE ELLIOTT

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Marijuana advocates march along Monroe Center in downtown Grand Rapids Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012. Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth recently filed a lawsuit to block a voter-approved city amendment to decriminalize marijuana. [Cory Morse | MLive.com]
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Marijuana advocates march along Monroe Center in downtown Grand Rapids Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012. Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth recently filed a lawsuit to block a voter-approved city amendment to decriminalize marijuana. [Cory Morse | MLive.com]

The city of Grand Rapids, Michigan will decriminalize marijuana possession and use “very soon,” according to the city manager.

“I believe we will very soon do that,” said City Manager Greg Sundstrom, reports Matt Vande Bunte of MLive.com. “I want to make sure our (police) department is ready. I want to make sure our courts are in alignment. This is nothing to be taken lightly.”

Grand Rapids officials are preparing a news release which will give a date for implementation of of the voter-approved decrim.

This asshole -- Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth -- first urged Grand Rapids voters to reject marijuana decrim. When they ignored his dumb ass and voted it in, he sued in court to stymie the will of the people. [MLive.com]
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This asshole — Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth — first urged Grand Rapids voters to reject marijuana decrim. When they ignored his dumb ass and voted it in, he sued in court to stymie the will of the people.
[MLive.com]

The decrim measure is being challenged in court by pot-hating redneck Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth, reports John Agar, also of MLive.com. Forsyth sued to stop the charter amendment, claiming it usurps his authority under state law to “review” marijuana cases. So,  he’s basically saying, “Respect my authoriTAH,” much like Cartman on South Park.

A temporary injunction on decrim was lifted last month by Kent Circuit Judge Paul Sullivan while Prosecutor Forsyth’s challenge plays out.

Almost 60 percent of city voters favored decriminalization in November, giving the thumbs up to a city charter amendment that reduces marijuana possession from a misdemeanor to a civil infraction, similar to a parking ticket.

While the court hasn’t ruled in favor of Grand Rapids, it did reject Prosecutor Forsyth’s motion for preliminary injunction on decdrim; that allows the city to implement the policy pending final resolution of the case.

March 1 will likely be announced as the day of decrim implementation, according to Mayor George Heartwell, but Sundstrom told MLive it could happen as soon as this week.

Interestingly, there’s some disagreement among city commissioners over exactly how to move forward with the voter-approved plan.

“Some say the sooner the better,” Heartwell said. “There’s another position that says, ‘Why implement now when the courts might revise it?”

That last position, though, surely sounds a lot like the last gasp of a chicken-hearted prohibitionist, to me.

 

 

 

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