Alaska lawmakers updating drug laws

Posted: Friday, March 12, 2010

JUNEAU - Alaska lawmakers are updating drug laws to address "robotripping," the unregulated psychedelic herb salvia divinorum and abuse of a synthetic prescription opiate used to treat addictions.

The House Judiciary Committee passed a bill Wednesday to restrict sales of over-the-counter medicines containing the cough suppressant dextromethorphan, or DXM, tentatively to those 18 or older. Abusing DXM is also known as "robotripping."

The head of an Alaska substance screening business testified that requests for DXM testing had recently jumped from one a year to one a week.

The bill also adds salvia, typically smoked, and buprenorphine to a list of controlled substances.

The bill now goes to the House Finance Committee. Rep. Kyle Johansen, a Ketchikan Republican, is the sponsor.

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