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Minutes for HB2487 - Committee on Judiciary

Short Title

Providing immunity from prosecution for certain drug crimes when persons seek or provide medical assistance related to the use of a controlled substance.

Minutes Content for Thu, Mar 14, 2024

Chairwoman Warren opened the hearing on HB2487

Jason Thompson provided an overview of the bill and stood for questions. (Attachment 5)

Representative Pat Proctor State Representative 41st District, supports the bill.  He states his community has been deeply impacted by fentanyl and has seen nearly a dozen of overdose victims.  He questions how many of those deaths were a result of a delay because the people present were reluctant to call for fear of arrest.  (Attachment 6)

Ed Klumpp, Kansas Sheriffs Association; Kansas Association of Chiefs of Police; Kansas Peace Officers Association, testified in strong support of this bill.  He states our associations are very interested in supporting not only legislative action that enhances our ability to detect, deter, and prosecute drug violations, but also in supporting other actions that can aid in reducing the resulting deaths. (Attachment 7)

Stuart Little, Behavioral Health Association of Kansas, supports passage of HB2487 that will keep people alive until emergency help arrives.  This law will join numerous other states with similar laws. (Attachment 8)

Chrissy Mayer, Chief Community-Based Services Officer, DCCCA, supports this bill.  She states that currently 48 other jurisdictions have Good Samaritan laws designed to prevent overdose deaths. In states with this type of law, there are lower rates of opioid-related overdoes deaths. (Attachment 9)

Kristy Sherley, Private Citizen, she supports this bill and states there is addiction all over the state of Kansas and it's not just fentanyl, this law can bring awareness that if someone is in an active overdoes it is safe to call for help.   (Attachment 10).

Ashley Richey, Private Citizen, testified in support of the bill.  As a nurse in a substance abuse treatment center here in Kansas, she knows firsthand that fentanyl is found laced in several drugs, including marijuana.  We have to start doing what we can in order to combat this epidemic. (Attachment 11)

James Cobuluis, Private Citizen, stated that people in active addiction find themselves in bad situations sometimes and if they know that they are safe to call 911 they will stay and help the person.  (Attachment 12)

Amber Saale-Burger, Private Citizen, shared her family story today, she said they have lost 4 family members in the last 2 years to illicit fentanyl.  This law could be the difference between life and death for someone. With illicit fentanyl usage on the rise now is most defiantly the time to take action and save lives!  (Attachment 13)

Maureen Knell on behalf of herself and Mitzi Groves, Private Citizens, support the passage of HB2487. Passing this bill will save more lives and give people another chance for hope and recovery. (Attachment 14) 

Written-only testimony in support of HB2487 was submitted by:

Nicholas Reinecker provided testimony in opposition of HB2487. He believes the most straight forward way to ensure that fear of criminalization does not deter help-seeking is true decriminalization.  (Attachment 31)

There being no further conferees, Chairwoman Warren closed the hearing on HB2487.