Calendar Item 947

Print this page
Legislative Committee ReportClose Window X
The Petition is amended as follows:
At the end of the petition add as follows:

We note with deep concern that law enforcement against possession and use of illegally procured drugs has resulted in a dramatic increase in jail and prison populations, often consisting disproportionally of poor minority young persons, often due to huge sentencing disparities between possession of ‘crack’ cocaine (the cheaper form, used more by poor minorities, where possession of only 5 grams is subject to a five-year mandatory minimum sentence), and possession of powder cocaine (the more expensive and purer form where possession of 500 grams or more is necessary to invoke a five-year mandatory minimum sentence), even though the two forms are pharmacologically identical, and therefore call for fairness in sentencing through reform of sentencing guidelines governing the possession and use of powder and crack cocaine.