Hawaii lawmakers advance bills on marijuana, elections
By ANITA HOFSCHNEIDER
HONOLULU (AP) - Hawaii House and Senate judiciary committees are moving forward bills to decriminalize marijuana, curb child prostitution and reform state elections.
The Senate judiciary committee on Tuesday approved a bill to make the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana a civil offense, not a criminal one. Offenders would also pay a $1,000 fine.
Thirteen of the state's 25 senators co-sponsored the initiative. A separate bill to legalize marijuana in Hawaii died in the House earlier this session.
The state House judiciary committee approved a bill aimed at curbing child prostitution by making it a felony to solicit prostitution from a minor.
The same committee approved a bill to establish Election Day voter registration in an effort to improve Hawaii's abysmal voter turnout rate.
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