The Times West Virginian

West Virginia

February 19, 2014

Senate: Pseudoephedrine products prescription-only

Measure passes 25-9, mostly along party lines

CHARLESTON — The West Virginia Senate passed legislation Tuesday that would make pseudoephedrine products prescription-only. The measure passed 25-9, mostly along party lines.

The common ingredient in many cold- and sinus-relief medications is also a critical component of methamphetamine, which are “cooked” in labs or in a “shake and bake” method in 2-liter soda bottles. Drug arrests for meth have increased in the last few years, from 229 in 2011 to 533 last year. Meth arrests have occurred in 45 of the state’s 55 counties.  

“Meth has become a scourge in our society,” said chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee Corey Palumbo, D-Kanawha. “This is the action we need to take to eradicate these labs.

“It’s imperative we pass a bill like this,” he said.  

Palumbo acknowledged that the law will not mean a meth-free state.

Sen. Clark Barnes, R-Randolph, said he opposed the bill because it turned over control to the medical community.

“The No. 1 problem with drugs in West Virginia is prescription pain medication,” Barnes said. “It certainly doesn’t take a great deal of thought to realize the No. 1 problem is already in the hands of the medical community, we may not be solving the meth problem by turning it over to the medical community.”

The bill now carries an amendment that allows one possession offense of fewer than 3.6 grams to be expunged from a criminal record, as long as the drug is being used for its intended purpose.

Sen. Evan Jenkins, R-Cabell, who offered a similar amendment Monday, said he “appreciated the effort,” but was puzzled why this amendment is more acceptable than his.

“Why couldn’t we allow people to get out of it without having to be charged in the first place?” Jenkins asked.

Palumbo said Jenkins‘ amendment would allow multiple possessions.

“This allows one shot. Beyond that, you’re on notice,” Palumbo said.

“Clearly, we raised an issue yesterday that caused concern,” Jenkins said.

Jenkins voted in favor of the bill as amended, while Democrat Truman Chafin, D-Mingo, voted nay.

The bill now will move to the House of Delegates.

Text Only
West Virginia
  • Veterans crisis center coming to Clarksburg

    The long delays for veterans seeking medical care at VA hospitals have prompted The American Legion to plan a short-term crisis center in Clarksburg.

    July 29, 2014

  • Weekend tornado confirmed in West Virginia

    The National Weather Service has confirmed a tornado touched down in Pleasants and Ritchie counties over the weekend.

    July 29, 2014

  • Rahal: Fund VA reform ‘for our veterans’

     On the cusp of Congress’s lengthy summer break, factions sparring over legislation to strengthen health care and funding reforms for the Department of Veterans Affairs may have reached a compromise.
    Although final details are still in the works, the top two negotiators, Sen. Bernard Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., released a joint statement that said they had “made significant progress toward and agreement on legislation to make VA more accountable and to help the department recruit more doctors, nurses and other health-care professionals.”

    July 29, 2014

  • Attorney general reaches $950,000 settlement with three financial groups

    West Virginia’s attorney general has reached a $950,000 settlement with three companies over allegations of antitrust law violations.

    July 28, 2014

  • Woman convicted in teen’s slaying moved

    A Monongalia County teenager has been transferred to a state prison to complete her sentence for the slaying of another teenager.
    The Lakin Correctional Center near Point Pleasant said Friday Rachel Shoaf has been booked at the Division of Corrections prison. Shoaf turned 18 last month and had been held in a juvenile facility.

    July 26, 2014

  • Board suspends clinic operator’s license

    A West Virginia board Friday suspended the license of the operator of a pain management clinic where investigators found syringes were being reused. It was the second disciplinary action involving the doctor’s license within a decade.

    July 26, 2014

  • Candidates: Leave global warming debate to scientists

    Two West Virginia congressional hopefuls said during their first candidate forum matchup Thursday that the global warming debate is better left to scientists.
    Democrat Nick Casey and Republican Alex Mooney added that other countries should step up in reducing carbon emissions.

    July 24, 2014

  • Lawsuit filed over Dirty Girl Mud Run

    A lawsuit has been filed against the producers of a run that was canceled in Charleston in which participants were told they wouldn’t be issued refunds.

    July 24, 2014

  • WVa. man sues GM over wife's death

    A West Virginia man has filed a lawsuit against General Motors Corp., claiming a defective ignition switch in a Chevrolet Cobalt caused a 2006 accident that killed his pregnant wife.

    July 24, 2014

  • Feds commit to health studies on spilled chemical

    After largely dismissing the possibility of long-term health problems, federal officials will conduct more studies on chemicals that spilled into West Virginia’s largest drinking water supply in January.
    In the next two months, federal health officials are also heading back to West Virginia.

    July 24, 2014

House Ads
Featured Ads