Recently elected Democratic Governor Dan Malloy wants Connecticut to join its neighbor Massachusetts in making the penalty for minor marijuana possession a simple fine. From the Hartford Advocate:

Although his speech never actually used the words “decriminalization of marijuana,” Gov. Dannel Malloy is getting behind the concept as a way to help cut the number of people arrested and jailed for “minor, non-violent or drug offenses.”

The lovely part about his plan is linking  it to the fearsome task of plugging gigantic holes in the state budget.

“This new policy will save us millions of dollars, which is a benefit of a more enlightened policy whose time I think has come,” Malloy said in presenting his budget plans to the General Assembly Wednesday.

When Malloy won in 2010, he switched control of the governorship from Republican to Democratic hands, giving Dems full control of the state government.

With Malloy’s party in control of the legislature, and the state looking for anyway to reduce their budget deficit, the prospects of the legislature approving his proposal to save money by reducing the penalty for minor marijuana possession to a simple infraction–which carries no criminal record and only a $100 fine–looks strong.