HB 2303

  • Virginia House Bill
  • 2021 Regular Session
  • Introduced in House Jan 19, 2021
  • House
  • Senate
  • Governor

Controlled substances; reduces penalty for possession of a Schedule I or II substance, penalties.


Possession of controlled substances; penalties. Reduces the penalty for possession of a Schedule I or II controlled substance from a Class 5 felony to a Class 1 misdemeanor and the penalty for possession of a Schedule IV or V controlled substance from a Class 2 misdemeanor and a Class 3 misdemeanor, respectively, to a Class 4 misdemeanor. Consequently, the bill removes felony violations of possession of a controlled substance from the definition of barrier crime related to criminal history checks for eligibility for various types of employment, to volunteer or provide certain services, or to establish or operate certain types of regulated businesses. The bill also limits the previous convictions that make a person ineligible for disposition under the first offender statute to a previous conviction for possession of a controlled substance or manufacturing, selling, giving, distributing, or possessing with intent to manufacture, sell, give, or distribute a controlled substance or an imitation controlled substance. Under current law, a previous conviction for any drug-related criminal offense, or under any statute of the United States or of any state relating to narcotic drugs, marijuana, or stimulant, depressant, or hallucinogenic drugs makes a person ineligible for such disposition. The bill also amends the required conditions of probation under the first offender statute. The bill changes the penalty for an attempt to commit a felony drug offense from imprisonment for not less than one nor more than 10 years to a Class 6 felony and removes the felony offenses for a prisoner to secrete or have in his possession any chemical compound that he has not lawfully received, any Schedule III controlled substance, or marijuana. The bill makes secreting or possessing a controlled substance or marijuana by a prisoner punishable the same as possession of such controlled substances or marijuana by a person who is not in prison. Lastly, the bill provides that the definition of "controlled substance" for purposes of the Drug Control Act shall not include mere residue of any drug, substance, or immediate precursor in Schedules I through VI that is not a weighable quantity or a countable dosage unit. The bill contains technical amendments.

Bill Sponsors (12)



Feb 05, 2021


Left in Courts of Justice

Feb 03, 2021


House committee, floor amendments and substitutes offered

Feb 01, 2021


Impact statement from DPB (HB2303)

Jan 26, 2021


Assigned Courts sub: Criminal

Jan 19, 2021


Presented and ordered printed 21102869D


Referred to Committee for Courts of Justice

Bill Text

Bill Text Versions Format
Presented and ordered printed 21102869D HTML

Related Documents

Document Format
Fiscal Impact Statement: HB2303F122.PDF PDF


Data on Open States is updated nightly from the official website of the Virginia General Assembly.

If you notice any inconsistencies with these official sources, feel free to file an issue.