ME.jailhouse#2.0117.CW Montebello City Council has approved use of a private contractor to run the n

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California is the largest state in the nation to have legalized and regulated recreational marijuana. With this legislation, there is an initiative to attempt to repair some of the damage that the criminalization of marijuana has previously done.   Disproportionately, previous police has impacted communities of color.  In 1998, nearly 90 percent of marijuana arrests involved a black suspect. A year ago, voters approved Proposition 64 not just to legalize marijuana for recreational purposes but also to reduce criminal penalties for various marijuana-related offenses for adults and juveniles. It authorized a new process for individuals in the state to get previous marijuana-related convictions retroactively reduced, reclassified as lesser offenses or dismissed altogether.  The new measure could assist hundreds of thousands of people whose lives have been disrupted or derailed over activities became legal as of January 1.  Criminal convictions can have devastating consequences long after the offense was committed and even after time has been served,  making it difficult to obtain employment, bank loans and housing. 

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