House passes bill to make fentanyl a permanently scheduled drug – KESQ

On Thursday, the House approved the “Stop the Fentanyl Lawwith a vote of 289 to 133.

The legislation will permanently list fentanyl on Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act, which prevents fentanyl-related substances from becoming street legal and gives law enforcement authority to seize fentanyl, in addition to prohibit other variations of the drug.

Visit our ‘Fentanyl Crisis’ section for more local stories

Local Republican Congressman Ken Calvert, who voted for the bill, tweeted a statement after it passed.

The local Democratic congressman, Dr. Raúl Ruiz, voted against the bill and issued a statement to Channel 3 news:

“The opioid epidemic is a public health crisis that has claimed more than 1 million American lives and affected communities across the country. This legislation falls short of the timing this crisis requires and does not take meaningful steps to prevent overdose deaths, mitigate the harms of illicit fentanyl, or make our communities safer. Instead, it would allow opioids to continue to devastate our communities by seeking incarceration over prevention, treatment, and recovery. As a physician, I am also concerned that legislation prohibits physicians from using certain medications that are critically needed for severe burn care and surgical procedures in the hospital. I am focused on common sense, bipartisan public health reforms that will help save lives, advance scientific research, prevent the use of illicit fentanyl, and maintain access to essential medicines and treatments.”

The bill now goes to the Senate, where we’ll see if it gets the same bipartisan support. Stick with News Channel 3 for continued coverage of the fentanyl crisis.

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