Thursday, June 28, 2012

Bad News, Good News

The bad news: Chicago is broke, homicides are up 37% this year, and the police department is feeling the strain.

The good news:  Chicago is so broke that they've decided to stop flushing money and lives down the toilet for marijuana possession:

People caught with small amounts of marijuana in Chicago will be ticketed instead of arrested under a new ordinance passed by the city council on Wednesday, as the third largest U.S. city became the latest to support more lenient penalties for using the drug.
The council voted 43-3 in favor of the measure, which was backed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
Under the ordinance, police in Chicago can issue a written violation with a fine of between $250 and $500 for possession of 15 grams (0.5 ounces) of marijuana or less rather than make an arrest.
It turns out that ruining lives for needless drug convictions are a luxury good, and one that Chicago has decided it can no longer afford. This is a great outcome - off the top of my head, this would have to be one of the worst NPV projects the city undertakes, so it's good that this is the one that gets canned when the crunch comes.

Somewhere at HBS, Michael Jensen is muttering to himself, 'I told you so.'

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