"He did sign it this morning," said spokeswoman Doxie McCoy. Gray is facing a tight race in the Democratic primary on Tuesday after being tarnished by links to a campaign finance scandal.Proponents had backed the marijuana measure as an issue of fairness. A study by the American Civil Liberties Union had shown that blacks in Washington were eight times more likely to be arrested for pot than people of other races.
Decriminalizing possession of small amounts of marijuana in the District of Columbia is part of a nationwide trend to lessening penalties for marijuana. Colorado and Washington state legalized recreational marijuana use in voter initiatives in 2012.Marijuana remains illegal under federal law, and the District's new measure will face review by the U.S. Congress, which is granted the power to oversee local laws by the U.S. Constitution.