Lawmakers file new bills that could impact San Antonians

New Bills Filed

SAN ANTONIO -- Marijuana. Eight states just passed laws to make recreational and medicinal use legal and now legislators want to make some serious changes to Texas law.

"It's going to allow us to take something that is over-punished and kind of let it come out into light," San Antonio resident Nathan Pipoly said.

House Bill 81 would remove current criminal charges for possession of small amounts of it instead issue a civil citation or a fine. Pipoly knows the marijuana industry since he worked in Colorado for dispensaries.

"I worked both recreational and medically," he said.  

The bill would reduce fines for people in possession of an ounce or less to $250. Right now it can cost up to $2,500 and 180 days in jail.

Pipoly was caught with a small amount of marijuana years ago.

"It was nerve-wracking worrying about it coming out on my background check. It has since been taken off of my record but for thousands of San Antonians and Texans that is an issue," Pipoly said.

Another bill up for consideration would make ridesharing, like Uber and Lyft a statewide option.

"Trying to get it regulated is a lot more secure for people who are worried about using it however I think its constricting to some drivers," said Jackson Dailey, he's a full-time Uber driver.

The bill would remove bans on ride shares, like the one currently in Austin.

"Why aren't we coming down to the cab companies and saying ‘hey can you lower your prices and be more competitive in a free market system,’" Dailey said.

The bill will be up for consideration Jan. 10.

While it wants to open up the free market, it also wants to enforce stricter regulations. For example, if you want to be a driver you have to have a background check and you have to have a statewide operating permit.

On a different note, legislators are also talking about feminine hygiene. Specifically tampons. A bill proposes to make them tax-free.

 

(© 2016 KENS)


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