Looking into the details of the new fentanyl laws
In the final hours of the 2022 legislative session, the Colorado General Assembly passed HB22-1326, the Fentanyl Accountability and Prevention, which was signed by Governor Polis. The bill received considerable news coverage about the change in law making it a Level 4 drug felony to possess 1-4 grams of fentanyl or any drug of that weight that contains any amount of fentanyl.
The bill makes possession of more than 4 grams of fentanyl or any drug of that weight that contains any amount of fentanyl a Level 1 drug felony. The bill also includes a considerable amount of funding for a variety of responses to the opioid crisis, which is now driven by illicit fentanyl in counterfeit pills and a variety of drugs, such as heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamines.
With regard to funding, much of which is from the federal American Rescue Plan Act, but also a sizeable amount from the State General Fund. Here are some funding highlights from the final bill; a deeper dive into each provision of the 71-page bill can be found here.
- $19.7 million the Colorado Naloxone Bulk Purchase Fund at Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE)
- $6 million to the Harm Reduction Grant Program Cash Fund at CDPHE
- $300,000 for non-laboratory synthetic opiate detection tests to CDPHE
- $3 million the Jail-Based Behavioral Health Service Program in the Behavioral Health Administration
- $10 million for treatment and detoxification programs related to substance use treatment and prevention services.
- $700,000 for Managed Services Organization regional evaluations related to substance use treatment and prevention services.
- $138,362 allocated to the Judicial Department for probation programs.
- $150,000 to the Department of Law for the study of the use of the Internet for the purpose of fentanyl trafficking.
- $5 million to CDPHE for a fentanyl education campaign.
- $50,000 to CDPHE for regional trainings related to the fentanyl education campaign.
- $30,000 to CDPHE for website development for the fentanyl education campaign.
- $7 million to Division of Criminal Justice in the Coloradoan Department of Public Safety.
- $360,00 to the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Financing for medical services premiums