In a press conference that was unthinkable just a short time ago, several county and city officials Thursday morning vowed to push for changes in local and state law that would make low-level possession of marijuana punishable by tickets instead of arrests.

Citing data Ben Joravsky and I reported recently, Cook County commissioner John Fritchey and four Chicago aldermen said the time has come to “do what’s right” and stop spending money and time locking up casual pot users.

“I think we’re spinning our wheels, we’re wasting our time, and we’re also wasting taxpayers’ money,” said Alderman Walter Burnett Jr. (27th Ward). “This is a common-sense, makes-sense issue. This is what’s right.”