OFFICE OF FISCAL ANALYSIS

Legislative Office Building, Room 5200

Hartford, CT 06106 (860) 240-0200

http: //www.cga.ct.gov/ofa

SB-1014

AN ACT CONCERNING THE PENALTY FOR CERTAIN NONVIOLENT DRUG OFFENSES.

AMENDMENT

LCO No.: 8294

File Copy No.: 638

Senate Calendar No.: 396

OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact:

Agency Affected

Fund-Effect

FY 12 $

FY 13 $

Judicial Dept.

GF - Revenue Loss

53, 000

53, 000

Note: GF=General Fund

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The amendment strikes the underlying bill and associated fiscal impact.

Section 1 of the amendment reduces the fines for possession of less than one-half ounce of marijuana. Specifically, it reduces the fine for a first offense from $1, 000 to $150, and for a second or subsequent offense from $3, 000 to $200 - $500. This change will result in an estimated revenue loss of $65, 000 to the General Fund.1 This estimate assumes a similar number of fines for this offense are issued in the future and the total revenue collected will decrease proportionally according to the average value of the fine issued.2

Section 2 of the amendment makes a conforming change that will not result in a fiscal impact.

Section 3 of the amendment also reduces the penalty for specified actions involving drug paraphernalia from a crime to an infraction when such actions relate to less than one-half ounce of marijuana, which will result in a revenue gain of $12, 000. This estimate assumes that establishment of an infraction only for this offense will increase the frequency with which fines are imposed and collected (at a rate of 50%) for an estimated 75 offenders annually.3

Section 4 of the amendment establishes driver's license penalties for a person under age 21 who is convicted of possessing less than one-half ounce of marijuana or specified actions involving drug paraphernalia relating to less than one-half ounce of marijuana. The motor vehicle commissioner must suspend the person's driver's license or nonresident operating privilege for 150 days. This is not expected to result in a fiscal impact.

Sections 7 to 10 of the amendment make various changes regarding possession of less than one-half ounce of marijuana by a delinquent, and will not result in a fiscal impact.

Sources:

Judicial Department Offenses and Revenue Database

The preceding Fiscal Impact statement is prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for the purposes of information, summarization and explanation and does not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.

1 In 2010, there were 604 fines issued for possession of four ounces or less of marijuana, with $156, 000 in revenue collected, or an average fine value of $258.

2 This estimate is based on an average fine value of $165.

3 In 2010, 78 fines were issued for this offense, and $11, 950 was collected.