Hogan Introduces Bills to Fight Heroin Epidemic - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Hogan Introduces Bills to Fight Heroin Epidemic

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP/WBOC)- Gov. Larry Hogan wants to increase drug-trafficking penalties and strengthen Maryland's prescription drug monitoring program to help fight the state's heroin epidemic.
    
The two measures were introduced by the Republican governor on Tuesday.
    
Hogan wants to change Maryland's Gang Statute to better model it after the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act. The governor says the changes would help in the prosecution of drug traffickers who are part of an ongoing criminal enterprise.

"Our administration is committed to doing everything in our power to bring all the various stakeholders together to find the best ideas, and to work toward solutions to the heroin and opioid crisis that has overtaken our state," Hogan said. "These two bills will give medical professionals and law enforcement the tools they need to attack this crisis from every direction, with everything we’ve got. This problem is real and it demands our full and immediate attention."
    
The state's prescription drug monitoring program was formed to help health professionals and law enforcement identify and investigate drug abuse. But the governor's administration says widespread adoption of the program hasn't taken place yet. The governor's bill would phase in mandatory registration and use.

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