drugs

Slatery drops opposition to opioid lawsuits by DAs; says no TN lawsuit in federal court

Attorney General Herbert Slatery has abandoned a legal effort to block district attorneys general from filing lawsuits against opioid manufacturers in a “ceremonial surrender” Thursday before Campbell County Circuit Court Judge John McAfee, reports the News Sentinel. And Slatery has decided against filing an opioid lawsuit on behalf of the state in federal court.

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MTSU Poll: Most Tennesseans support citizenship for ‘dreamers,’ limited marijuana legalization

Press release from Middle Tennessee State University

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. — Solid majorities of Tennessee voters express support for immigrants in the country illegally, especially the so-called “Dreamers” who were brought to the country as children, according to the latest MTSU Poll.

In other results that may raise eyebrows, a broad majority of Tennessee voters support at least limited marijuana legalization. Even 51 percent of self-identified evangelical Christians surveyed say they support legalization for medicinal use.

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Push for passage of medical marijuana bill abandoned for 4th consecutive year

Sponsors of the “Medical Cannabis Act” gave up their push for passage of the bill for 2018 on Tuesday, acknowledging there’s no enough support for legalizing use of marijuana derivatives in medications among colleagues in the General Assembly.

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Medical marijuana bill watered down, still stalled

The House sponsor of a bill to allow Tennesseans’ use of medical cannabis performed major surgery on the legislation in a committee Wednesday, discarding a number of controversial provisions in an effort to soften opposition. But the Times Free Press reports there was still opposition even after the bill’s scope was substantially reduced and a vote was put off for another week.

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Slatery moves to block local government lawsuits against opioid manufacturers

State Attorney General Herbert Slatery has moved to block a lawsuit filed against opioid manufacturers by three Northeast Tennessee counties, contending they  don’t have legal authority to do so. A group of 14 district attorneys general say he’s wrong.

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Haslam opioid bill approved by committees after some backroom compromising

After weeks of backroom talks, Tennessee lawmakers have apparently settled on a compromise that could establish some of the toughest rules on opioid prescribing in the country, reports WPLN. Gov. Bill Haslam’s proposal, after amendments, was approved by the Senate Health Committee Wednesday at what was billed as its final meeting of the year and also got the blessing of the House Health Subcommittee.

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Kustoff bill targets financing of illegal opioid trade

Republican U.S. Rep. David Kustoff (R-Memphis) is applauding the passage of his bill targeting the financial networks supporting the illegal drug trade and the opioid epidemic sweeping the country.

The National Strategy for Combating the Financing of Transnational Criminal Organizations Act (H.R. 4768) passed unanimously on Tuesday.

“In order to defeat these criminal organizations, we must track down their financial networks and cut them off at the source,” Kutoff said in a release.

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Gummy bear bust goes sour with TBI testing

District Attorney General Jennings Jones is dropping all charges against more than 20 Rutherford County business owners who were arrested and saw their stores padlocked earlier this month in what officials called “Operation Candy Crush,” reports the Murfreesboro Post. Officers thought the businesses were selling gummy bears and other candies coated with marijuana-laced cannabis oil, but Jones says TBI testing of the products was “inconclusive.”

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Diane Black unveils opioid, public safety plan; calls for addicts to be treated in prison

Republican gubernatorial candidate Diane Black is releasing her first major policy proposal concerning the opioid crisis and her plans for keeping Tennesseans safe.

The plan calls for rehabbing drug addicts in prison as a cost-saving measure, and hiring 25 new TBI agents to help fight drug trafficking (Gov. Bill Haslam is calling for 10 new agents in this year’s budget).

The initiative also calls for jailing demonstrators who “block streets, riot and engage in violent acts in the name of ‘protest,'” and for boosting penalties for people who “desecrate monuments or incite or abet others in desecrating a monument.”

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Black campaigns with Ramsey, talks drug addiction at ETSU

While campaigning for governor in the Tri-Cities area Monday, U.S. Rep. Diane Black stopped by East Tennessee State University’s Bill Gatton of College of Pharmacy to participate in a roundtable discussion on drug addiction treatment and prevention research, reports the Johnson City Press.

Accompanied by former Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey, who now serves as her campaign co-chair, Black listened attentively and asked many questions, even interjecting at times to ask for clarification or provide her own feedback.

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