Around the time of the COVID-19 outbreak in March, Hall County Solicitor General Stephanie Woodard met with public safety officials and discussed the recent changes in the law concerning hemp and misdemeanor marijuana charges.
“One of the things that all of the chiefs and the public (safety) executives that were in the discussion with me agreed was not knowing when testing by the state would be available — (from) the (Georgia Bureau of Investigation)—and what the testing procedures would be,” she said.
Woodard said there was concern from law enforcement about taking someone into custody with cases that could not be immediately addressed. The solicitor general said the Georgia Hemp Farming Act created a “collateral consequence” of a testing issue for the GBI misdemeanor marijuana testing.
The result has been to move to a citation in lieu of an arrest for misdemeanor possession of marijuana when that is the only charge. Misdemeanor possession of marijuana is less than an ounce.
The hemp act became law on May 10, 2019, which was intended to “allow farmers and businesses to begin to cultivate, handle, and process hemp and sell hemp products for commercial purposes,” according to the act’s text.
As a result, some jurisdictions changed their policies regarding misdemeanor marijuana. Gwinnett County decided to no longer prosecute any misdemeanor marijuana cases with an arrest date on or after May 10, 2019, according to a memorandum dated Aug. 7, 2019.
Hemp has 0.3% or less of THC, the main psychoactive element, whereas marijuana has 5% or higher.
DUI Laws | What You Need to Know
The laws make it illegal for drivers of all ages to operate motor vehicles if they have BAC percentages of:
- 0.08% or higher, if they’re 21 years old or older operating regular passenger vehicles.
- 0.04% or higher, if they’re operating commercial vehicles.
- 0.02% or higher, if they’re younger than 21 years old.
Georgia State law also requires a clinical evaluation and the attendance of a DUI / Risk Reduction Program that’s certified/licensed by the Georgia Department of Driver’s Services before your driver’s license can be reinstated if you have been charged with any of the following:
- Drug Possession
- Other drug offenses
- Under-age possession of drugs or alcohol
Before getting behind the wheel after having a few, consider the many reasons why you should not.
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