STRONG MEASURE ON METHAMPHETAMINES PASS SENATE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Senate Majority Leader BobClegg

(603) 271 – 2111

Contact: Senator Sheila Roberge

(603) 271 - 2111

April 20, 2006

Concord , NH – The Senate today voted overwhelming to pass strong penalties to those that engage in methamphetamine use in New Hampshire. House Bill 1667 establishes penalties for methamphetamine manufacturing and possession of substances with the intent to manufacture methamphetamines. The bill also prohibits certain conduct involving anhydrous ammonia, which can be used in “cooking” (making) methamphetamines.

The legislation is needed because of the nation-wide increase in the home manufacturing of methamphetamine as well as the horrible danger posed in the manufacturing process. The legislation was developed by the Legislative Caucus on Methamphetamine, which is a bipartisan group with state representatives from all branches of government Methamphetamine use has become more popular in recent years, prompting the formation of the Caucus and the development of a comprehensive plan to address the serious issues around methamphetamine.

There are currently 40 possible agents that can be used in the manufacturing of methamphetamines, since many of the components can be commonly found in household items. Senator Sheila Roberge (R- Bedford) stated, “New Hampshire is taking the necessary steps to rid ourselves of methamphetamine labs. HB 1667 provides for crucial enforcement and allows our police forces to target suspected labs as they contain deadly concoctions that are extremely volatile.”

This legislation establishes a new section of chapter law which would enable a law enforcement officer to stop a clandestine lab from being set up -- if the police can prove intent.

Senate Majority Leader Bob Clegg (R- Hudson) concluded, “Of the17 methamphetamine labs uncovered recently in New England, twelve were in New Hampshire. With both Massachusetts and Vermont considering strong methamphetamine legislation, this bill would prevent New Hampshire from becoming a safe harbor for methamphetamine producers.”