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State unlikely to decriminalize marijuana this year

(AP) A key panel in the House of Delegates has rejected a proposal to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.

The panel voted 7-1 against the measure Jan. 24, likely dooming any chance of Virginia joining the growing list of states to decriminalize or legalize the drug this year, The Virginian-Pilot reported.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment is pushing legislation that would lessen penalties for a first marijuana-related offense.

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