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Mar 29, 2016 11:25 PM

NH Senate hearing includes bill with possible changes to drug take-back program

CONCORD - Lawmakers met to discuss a potential bill that could make big changes for the drug take-back program on Tuesday.

"We need to change the way we're thinking about drug addiction," said Republican State Rep. Victoria Sullivan.

Sullivan proposed a bill that could drastically change the drug take-back program allowing people to drop off illicit drugs like fetanyl, heroin and cocaine without being arrested and charged. This also includes needles containing those drugs.

“We want the people that honestly just want to get clean,” Sullivan said, stating they want to help those who make the effort first. “They just want to get healthy."

The bill passed through the House last week, and Tuesday it was presented at a Senate hearing.

Some were in favor, but Bedford Chief of Police John Bryfonski - representing the N.H. Chief's Association - voiced strong opposition. He said there is no way to determine that those turning drugs in are people who truly want help and not drug dealers who don't want to be charged.

“This is a very very complicated matter" Bynfonsk saidi. "The current legislation doesn’t address any of these concerns as it relates to the current law both state and federal.”

NH1 News asked the chief that if those drug dealers did come in forward ad drop off the drugs, could it better the community by getting the drugs off the streets?

“My 38 years in law enforcement tells me that individuals that are trafficking elicit drugs are going to keep doing it until they get caught,” he said.

The committee did not vote on the bill Tuesday.

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