Colorado Legislative Council Staff
NO FISCAL IMPACT
January 21, 1998
Janis Baron (866-3523)
TITLE: CONCERNING AUTHORIZATION OF LOCALLY ADMINISTERED HARM-REDUCTION PROGRAMS TO REDUCE THE TRANSMISSION OF BLOOD-BORNE COMMUNICABLE DISEASES, AND, IN CONNECTION THEREWITH, AUTHORIZING LOCAL NEEDLE EXCHANGE PROGRAMS THAT INCLUDE INTERVENTION AND EDUCATION STRATEGIES.
Summary of Assessment
The bill includes the following provisions regarding locally administered needle exchange programs:
• allows any not-for profit organization or local health department to submit a program implementation plan to the Department of Public Health and Environment (DPHE) for operation of a needle exchange program;
• requires DPHE to review and either approve or deny the plan within 60 days;
• following approval of a program plan, allows the entity seeking to operate a needle exchange program to submit the plan to the governing body of the county, city and county, or municipality in which the program would operate;
• authorizes the governing body of the local government to impose requirements on the plan, approve the plan by resolution, or rescind the authority at any time;
• requires the governing body to transmit a copy of an approved plan to the county board of health or other designated regulatory review body;
• requires the governing body to hold a public hearing for comment on the plan prior to taking final action;
• specifies the minimum requirements for a program implementation plan;
• instructs the State Board of Health to adopt guidelines for needle exchange program implementation plans and standard reporting criteria on or before October 1, 1998;
• requires authorized needle exchange programs to issue identification cards;
• establishes reporting requirements for needle exchange programs and DPHE;
• repeals the authorization of needle exchange program, effective July 1, 2001;
• adds needle exchange program identification cards to the list of instruments the false creation of which constitutes forgery; and
• exempts participants, volunteers, and employees of a needle exchange program from the criminal provisions prohibiting possession and transfer of drug paraphernalia.
The bill is effective upon signature of the Governor.
For FY 1997-98, DPHE received an appropriation of $3,871,938 and 49.2 FTE for AIDS Surveillance and Prevention. Of this amount, $3,821,030 was federal funds and $50,908 was General Fund. DPHE indicates that as part of its federal requirements, its AIDS Surveillance and Prevention programs offer the following services: technical assistance; training; orientation and in-services in field intervention; program and policy development; direct services to multiple counties by disease intervention specialists; and partner notification services.
The bill places the following requirements on DPHE: (1) review plans; (2) adopt guidelines for needle exchange program implementation plans and standard reporting criteria on or before October 1, 1998; and (3) compile local program reports and prepare a summary report to the General Assembly on or before January 31, 2001. DPHE indicates that its AIDS Surveillance and Prevention programs can comply with the bill’s requirements within existing federal funds appropriations.
SECTION 2. 18-5-102. Forgery. Although the bill makes misrepresentation of a needle exchange program identification card a class 5 felony for forgery, it is not anticipated that this will impact the Department of Corrections.
SECTION 3. 18-18-430.5. Drug paraphernalia - exemptions - repeal. This provision exempts participants, volunteers, and employees of a needle exchange program from the criminal provisions prohibiting possession and transfer of drug paraphernalia. Section 18-18-428, C.R..S., possession of drug paraphernalia, carries a class 2 petty offense, punishable by a fine of not more than $100. Section 18-18-429, C.R..S., transfer of drug paraphernalia, carries a class 2 misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of $250 up to $1,000, or a jail sentence from 3 to 12 months, or both.
The bill is assessed as having no fiscal impact.
Public Health and Environment