Synthetic drug bill signed

Governor Dayton was joined at the signing ceremony today by: Senator Scott Newman; Representative Bob Barrett; Representative Kerry Gauthier; Chief Gordon Ramsay, Duluth Police Department; Sheriff Rich Stanek, Hennepin County; Dr. Cody Wiberg, Executive Director, Minnesota Board of Pharmacy; Frank Dolejsi, director, Minnesota State Forensic Science Lab; Paul Beaumaster, Rice County Attorney.
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On  Thursday, July 26, Governor Mark Dayton ceremoniously signed HF 2508.  The bill was originally signed into law in April 2012.  The bill enhances current law in regard to the growing problem of synthetic drug production and use in Minnesota.

This important public safety law expands the definition of illicit “synthetic” substances and grants the Minnesota Board of Pharmacy expedited rulemaking authority to handle the ever-changing chemical formulae used by drug producers.

The law increases the penalty for sale of synthetic cannabinoids from a gross misdemeanor to a felony, punishable by imprisonment for up to five years, a $10,000 fine, or both.  It takes effect August 1, 2012.

The bill passed with strong bipartisan support in both bodies of the Minnesota Legislature, and was supported by the Minnesota Board of Pharmacy, Minnesota Department of Public Safety, Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, League of Minnesota Cities, Minnesota Board of Health, Minnesota County Attorneys Association, and local law enforcement leaders.

“Not only does this legislation create a penalty to fit the crime, it also sends a message to parents around the state that synthetic drug use is a real and dangerous problem in Minnesota. We need to arm parents with the information necessary to recognize and respond to these drugs,” Rep.Bob Barrett explained.

“I am proud to stand with this public safety coalition. We are sending a message to drug producers and sellers that their behavior will not be tolerated, and our children’s lives will not lie in their hands,” he said.




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