In 2022, eighty-five percent of Austin, Texas, voters approved the Austin Freedom Act, which deprioritizes small amounts of marijuana possession. The act does not sit well with the Texas State Attorney General, Ken Paxton. According to a report from KVUE, his office has filed suit against Austin, claiming cities in the state can't decide to decriminalize crimes set by the state legislature.

Austin is one of at least sixteen cities or counties in Texas that have stopped enforcing possession laws for small quantities of Marijuana.


According to, larger cities like Dallas and El Paso and counties like Bexar and Nueces have done the same.

However, the State of Texas presents a counter-argument. They contend that this decriminalization goes against state law and is illegal, regardless of the community's approval.

Austin has responded by saying the policy is working. It is freeing up law enforcement to handle more critical and dangerous crimes. The city also maintains that historically, minorities were disproportionately targeted for enforcement.


The lawsuit was filed with the 345th Travis County District Court, with the AG's office asking for a temporary injunction before the hearing with Judge Jan Soifar. The judge said she would take time to consider both sides before deciding.

No matter which side you are on, this is a big decision for Texas citizens. It will have lasting effects on the marijuana debate in Texas. Right now, it seems the state is doing everything it can to cool marijuana reform that would eventually lead to legalization in Texas.

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