July 27, 2018

Senator Hassan and Representative Kuster Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill that Targets Counterfeit Pill Makers to Combat Opioid Crisis

WASHINGTON – In case you missed it, yesterday Senator Maggie Hassan and Representative Annie Kuster introduced a bipartisan, bicameral bill with Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Representative David Kustoff (R-TN) called the Substance Tableting and Encapsulating Enforcement and Registration (STEER) Act. This bipartisan legislation requires anyone who owns tableting or encapsulating machines, which are used to manufacture pills, to register them with the DEA to help ensure that the machines are not used for illicit purposes.

See below for highlights of the coverage:

From WMUR:

 pill

To watch the WMUR report click here.

From AP:

New Hampshire Democrats Maggie Hassan and Annie Kuster are part of a bipartisan group sponsoring a bill that targets counterfeit pill makers.

The bill allows the U.S. attorney general to create a registry of machines that are used to manufacture pills. This would ensure that the machines are not used for illicit purposes.

Hassan said members of both parties, and President Donald Trump’s own opioid commission, agree on the importance of regulating the machines.

Kuster said the spread of synthetic opioids has accelerated an already deadly epidemic. She said knockoff opioids often contain dangerous synthetics, like fentanyl, or carfentanil.

Other bill sponsors are Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy, of Louisiana, and Republican Rep. David Kustoff, of Tennessee.

From The Nashua Telegraph:

U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan and U.S. Rep. Annie Kuster, both D-N.H., joined Republican colleagues on Thursday to introduce the Substance Tableting and Encapsulating Enforcement and Registration Act.

Leaders said the legislation is yet another step in the ongoing battle against opioid abuse.

The bipartisan legislation would allow the U.S. Attorney General to create and maintain a registry of tableting or encapsulating machine owners, track machines imported or exported to or from the nation, and requires the Department of Justice to provide a report to Congress detailing the registration and accounting of any machines used in criminal activity and seized by the Drug Enforcement Administration.

“As part of our efforts to combat the opioid crisis, it is critical that we do everything that we can to prevent the production of counterfeit drugs that help fuel the tide of addiction,” Hassan said. “The bipartisan STEER Act requires anyone who owns tableting or encapsulating machines, which are used to manufacture pills, to register them with the DEA to ensure that the machines are not used for illicit purposes.”

… Joining the New Hampshire Democrats to introduce the legislation were U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and U.S. Rep. David Kustoff, R-Tenn.

From The Washington Examiner:

House and Senate lawmakers are pursuing legislation to crack down on the use of pill presses to create and distribute powerful opioids like fentanyl illegally.

A bipartisan bill in the House and a companion version in the Senate introduced Monday would increase enforcement of machines that are flooding into the U.S. and used to make counterfeit pills. 

… Kustoff is a sponsor of the House version alongside Rep. Annie Kuster, D-N.H. Sens. Bill Cassidy, R-La., and Maggie Hassan, D-N.H., are the sponsors of the Senate version.

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