Proposed bill would clear pot crimes from criminal records

OREGON — A proposed Oregon Senate bill discussed in Salem today aims to clear the criminal records of anyone convicted of misdemeanor marijuana charges before 2014; that’s when voters made it legal recreationally.

Before marijuana became legal, possessing, delivering, or manufacturing marijuana was either a misdemeanor or felony depending on the crime. But after measure 91 legalized marijuana, people still had criminal records for previous pot convictions.

To get a marijuana charge off your record, whether it’s a felony or misdemeanor, you can get it expunged or erased. The process often requires an attorney taking anywhere from 3 to 6 months and can cost a lot of money.

“A┬álot of people who are, you know, living on the edge may not have enough money to go through the expungement process or may not know how to do it,” said Paul Loney, attorney.

Advocates of the bill say having past marijuana convictions on your record makes it difficult to get jobs, housing, and much more.

They’re hoping marijuana felonies will be included on the bill as well.

The bill will be discussed again Monday.

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