Senate passes seven drug-related bills

The state Senate passed seven bills to crack down on drug offenses on Monday, including two that would make it easier to prosecute heroin dealers and another making it an additional crime to sell drugs within 1,000 feet of a treatment clinic.

All of the bills passed overwhelmingly (two were approved unanimously) and had cleared the Senate at least once in previous years, but have not been taken up by the Assembly. Two proposals, including the drug-free zone around treatment centers, have been approved five times since 2011. One bill related to heroin sales would enable authorities to charge anyone found with at least 50 packages or $300 worth of heroin with possession with intent to sell.

In a statement announcing the latest round of drug bills on Monday, Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan said “it is past time that the Governor and Assembly recognize the critical role enforcement plays in preventing drugs from entering our communities and stop delaying new laws that would strengthen penalties for serious drug dealers.”

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    Chris McKenna

    Chris McKenna covers Orange County government and politics for the Times Herald-Record. He has been a reporter at the newspaper since 1999. Read Full

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