Enrolled HCR 4: Encouraging the establishment of a methamphetamine watch program.

00 Enrolled HCR 4                                                                                                          
01 Encouraging the establishment of a methamphetamine watch program.                                                       
02                                         _______________                                                                 
03 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                             
04      WHEREAS methamphetamine use and production is a growing threat to the State of                                   
05 Alaska; and                                                                                                             
06      WHEREAS the widespread availability of methamphetamine is illustrated by                                         
07 increasing numbers of methamphetamine seizures, arrests, indictments, and sentences;                                    
08 Anchorage, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, the Kenai Peninsula, Southeast Alaska, and                                    
09 Fairbanks have all experienced significant problems with methamphetamine-related crimes                                 
10 and methamphetamine laboratories ("meth labs"); and                                                                     
11      WHEREAS unlike many other synthetic drugs, methamphetamine is produced                                           
12 inexpensively in clandestine laboratories using ordinary household chemicals; meth labs can                             
13 be portable and are easily dismantled, stored, or moved; and                                                            
14      WHEREAS meth labs have been found in many different types of locations                                           
15 throughout Alaska, including homes, apartments, hotel rooms, rented storage spaces, and                                 
16 vehicles; and                                                                                                           
17      WHEREAS the process of making methamphetamine is highly dangerous, and can                                       
01 cause fires, explosions, and the release of toxic by-products into the environment; the                                 
02 production of one pound of methamphetamine releases poisonous gas into the atmosphere and                               
03 creates five to seven pounds of toxic waste; and                                                                        
04      WHEREAS, according to the federal Office of National Drug Control Policy, last                                 
05 year more than 3,000 children were rescued during seizures of more than 15,000 meth labs                                
06 nationwide; and                                                                                                         
07      WHEREAS "mom-and-pop" meth labs, where people prepare the drug from                                              
08 ingredients in common household items, are dangerous to law enforcement and emergency                                   
09 response personnel, and cost the state millions in court costs, cleanup expenses, and foster                            
10 care costs; and                                                                                                         
11      WHEREAS Kansas has developed a voluntary public/private partnership program                                      
12 called "Meth Watch" to combat the methamphetamine problem, and similar programs have                                    
13 been implemented in 11 states; and                                                                                      
14      WHEREAS the purposes of the meth watch program are to engage retailers, law                                      
15 enforcement officials, state and local agencies, schools, and other key partners in reducing the                        
16 diversion of precursor products for the illicit manufacturing of methamphetamine, to increase                           
17 awareness about the dangers of methamphetamine, to conduct a program of                                                 
18 methamphetamine abuse awareness in public schools, and to assist communities in educating                               
19 their citizens about the problems with methamphetamine abuse and meth labs;                                             
20      BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature urges that a meth watch                                         
21 program be established in Alaska, that grants available from the federal government and                                 
22 private sources be applied for, that the appropriation of matching funds be requested from the                          
23 state legislature if necessary, that community organizations be assisted in applying for funding                        
24 and implementing local meth watch programs, and that Alaskans be educated about                                         
25 methamphetamine abuse and the presence of meth labs in their communities.