Atlanta decriminalizes weed possession of one ounce or less: The Atlanta City Council on Monday unanimously passed legislation eliminating jail time and reducing penalties on possession of small amounts of marijuana, but not before mayoral candidates got into heated debates and backers of the bill became rowdy. The legislation, which was resurrected in September after spending months in committees because of concerns it might send the wrong message, brings Atlanta closer to other large cities across the nation that are either lessening penalties on pot or decriminalizing it altogether as Americans’ opinion on the drug evolves. –Report by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Leon Stafford Drivers of Mexican tour bus arrested after 264 bricks of weed found on board: Two drivers of a Mexican tour bus have been arrested near Tombstone after 320 pounds (145 kilograms) of marijuana was found in a hidden compartment. Willcox Station Border Patrol agents at the Highway 80 immigration checkpoint made the arrests Wednesday night. They referred the bus for an immigration inspection of the occupants, all identified as residents of Mexico. A Border Patrol drug-sniffing dog alerted agents to an odor emitting from the rear of the bus. –Report by The Associated Press Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers perform at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on May 29, 2017. (Tina Hagerling, The Know) Remembering the stony side of Tom Petty: His biggest weed hits Tom Petty was never one to tiptoe around toking. The frontman for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers and member of 1980s powerhouse Traveling Wilburys (along with a solid solo career) wrote many a song referencing reefer during a music career that spanned more than four decades.
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Universal credit, which merges six working-age benefits into a single payment, is being introduced in 50 job centres across the UK every month. It is paid in arrears, and there have been complaints about the six-week wait for payments, with almost a quarter of claimants waiting for longer because of delays in the system. In the leaders' first clash since Parliament returned from party conference season, Mr Corbyn said the reform was "driving up poverty, debt and homelessness", with people facing eviction due to a shortage of cash. It was "irresponsible to press on regardless", he said, also urging the PM to "show some humanity" and make the helpline - which costs between 3p and 55p a minute from a mobile phone - free of charge. The Department for Work and Pensions said the hotline was charged at standard local rates so was free for many people as part of their phone contracts. It added that people could request a free call back from the department. Mrs May said the government was building a welfare system that provided a safety net for those who need it and which also helps people to get into the workplace and earn more. Responding to questions about payment delays, she said more people were receiving advances which are available to those in need, adding that the government would continue to monitor the roll-out. The previous system put in place by the Labour government of 1997 to 2010 was "far too complicated" and left many people better off on benefits, she added.