About half of marijuana tickets in Grand Rapids going unpaid
Grand Rapids — Officials in Grand Rapids say about half of the people ticketed for marijuana possession are paying their fines.
The Grand Rapids Press reports more than $100,000 in civil infraction fines has gone uncollected since the drug was decriminalized in the city. Several hundred offenders haven't paid up, prompting the court to consider enforcing the lack of response to tickets as a misdemeanor.
Grand Rapids voters in 2012 decriminalized marijuana use and possession. Instead of a misdemeanor crime, marijuana offenses now are civil infractions. Offenders get a $25 fine for a first offense, $50 for a second offense and $100 for a third offense.
Officials say the court typically collects about 80 percent of civil infraction fines for offenses such as housing code violations, barking dogs and fireworks.