(Phoenix, Ariz. – May 3, 2005) Attorney General Terry Goddard today applauded the passage in the State House of Representatives of a comprehensive bill that attacks methamphetamine use and production in Arizona.
The meth bill would keep tablets containing pseudoephedrine, the key ingredient used to make meth, out of the hands of meth cookers. The bill would also impose smaller limits on the amount that can be purchased and stiffen criminal penalties for meth production. These provisions are identical to the law adopted in Oklahoma where meth lab busts have been reduced by 80 percent.
The bill passage follows recent announcements by Target Corp., Wal-Mart, Albertsons and other retailers that they would move drugs with pseudoephedrine behind pharmacy counters in stores nationwide.
"Today we took a big step forward to protect Arizona’s health and safety, especially important for children and first responders who are often innocent victims when meth is produced,” Goddard said. “The retailers’ actions over the last month demonstrate they are willing to help fight the meth epidemic in Arizona. Now it’s up to our legislators."
“This bill will protect our neighborhoods from the dangers of meth cooking. It will help keep our police and firefighters safe when they respond to locations that have meth labs,” said bill sponsor Tom O’Halleran.
The bill now moves to the State Senate for concurrence.
“It is important that we adopt the bill states like Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee, Iowa and many others have adopted to curb the meth epidemic,” Goddard said. “The provisions adopted by the House of Representatives are the same that dramatically reduced illegal labs in Oklahoma. Arizonans need the same amount of protection, and not a watered-down bill, to fight meth production.”