For example, the city’s original cannabis law did not prohibit possession or consumption inside a private residence that’s within 1,000 feet of a school — a violation under state law that can require 100 hours of community service in addition to fines and possible jail time.
Under Madison’s revised law, though, consuming cannabis within 1,000 feet of a school, including on public property and inside private residences, can now result in a municipal citation of $1 plus costs for a total of $62.26.
Additionally, the revised law bans possession of cannabis on a school bus, prohibits its use in a vehicle that is in operation and bars anyone 17 and younger from having or using the drug.
The changes also allow adults to possess and consume up to 28 grams of cannabis derivatives, such as THC-containing oil or marijuana-infused food and candy, commonly referred to as edibles, and permits having drug paraphernalia for cannabis.
While cannabis is decriminalized for the most part in private and public spaces, Madison police can still seek charges if its use involves someone dealing marijuana — regardless of the amount — or if users are suspected of other criminal offenses.
“My preference would have been for any changes to marijuana law to occur at the state level, for consistency,” acting police Chief Vic Wahl said in a statement. “I also would have preferred that this ordinance change only apply to those older than 21, for consistency with alcohol regulations.”