From the Local Hazardous Waste Management Program in King County, following is more detailed information about the two medicine take-back bills recently introduced in the state legislature.
SB 5234 and HB 1370 will protect our kids, our families, and our environment by creating a statewide system for secure return and environmentally sound disposal of leftover prescription and over-the-counter medicines from our homes.
· Help stop the epidemic of abuse and poisonings, and protect our water quality.
· Requires no state funds; budget-neutral to the state. Primarily financed by all drug producers selling medicines in Washington, as part of doing business. Removes financial burden from Sheriffs, police, and local governments.
· Not a government-run program. Establishes the non-profit WA Medicine Return Association that will be managed and financed by drug producers.
· Total annual costs of the program to drug producers collectively cannot exceed $2.5 million – or about 1 penny for every $16 in sales of medicines annually in Washington.
· Federal law has been changed to facilitate take-back of narcotics and controlled substances.
· Sheriffs, police, local govt’s, and pharmacies in ~12 counties are operating take-back programs but are struggling for funding.