Synthetic Drug bill clears another hurdle in MN legislature

By KBJR News 1

Synthetic Drug bill clears another hurdle in MN legislature

March 17, 2014 Updated Mar 17, 2014 at 4:57 PM CDT

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) - A bill designed to keep synthetic drugs off Minnesota streets cleared another legislative hurdle Monday.

The bill passed the state Senate's Health, Human Services and Housing Committee, and is now in the hands of the Judiciary Committee.

The bill, authored by Senator Roger Reinert (DFL-Duluth), would grant the Board of Pharmacy "cease and desist" authority to prevent the sale of synthetic drugs.

The bill would also include educational programs throughout the state's middle and high schools.

Senator Reinert says it comes in response to cites across the state, particularly Duluth, not having legal authority to stop retail shops like Last Place on Earth from selling synthetic drugs.

"We've done our work on the front–end, we've spent a lot of time [on it], and I think we've developed legislation that will not only be effective... but accepted," said DFL State Representative Erik Simonson, of Duluth.

State Rep. Simonson, who is the chief author of the House version of the bill, testified on Monday about the widespread usage of synthetic drugs, particularly among college–aged Minnesotans and young adults.

Billy Wagness