Senate passes two bills to help fight opioid epidemic

By TERRY C. BURTON,

Senate Bill 2607 would offer cities relief by expediting the rapid cleanup of rundown properties. It would allow cities to clean small parcels of rundown property less than one acre in size for which the city spends $250 or less. It would allow up to four cleanings a year for cities with populations of 25,000 or more. I authored this bill because it will help greatly as cities across the state deal with urban blight.


I voted for passage of Senate Bill 2840, the Opioid Crisis Intervention Act, includes tools to help local communities address the problem. The bill would allow individuals who report a victim of overdose to not be arrested for doing so and encourages cities to create pre-arrest diversion programs to enable individuals to receive treatment instead of jail when rehabilitation is possible.

I handled on the floor and led to passage Senate Bill 2759 that establishes the Mississippi Opioid Crisis Commission that would include the state health officer, members of state regulatory health care boards, and legislators to work on regulatory or legislative solutions to our opioid usage problem.

The passage of Senate Bill 2854 will allow the Mississippi Fair Commission to authorize the Department of Finance and Administration to purchase property bordering its eastern edge for future expansion once the commission has money available.

Senate Bill 2474 would create an online registry of convicted dog and cat abusers that Mississippi Bureau of Investigations would maintain.

I co-authored and supported passage of Senate Bill 2455 which would divert a portion of sales taxes to cities for infrastructure needs. Up to $40 million would be available to cities once the legislation is fully implemented. The bill also could bolster Mississippi’s ability to participate and receive matching funds if Congress and the president approve a transportation plan.

Other bills passed include:

•  I co-authored Senate Bill 2408 that would exempt veterans diagnosed with a total service related disability from entry fees into state parks.

•  I voted for Senate Bill 2418 that would reduce traffic on some rural roads by increasing the weight tolerance limits for harvest vehicles and vehicles loading or unloading at state ports. It is projected this would result in 20,000 fewer trucks making trips on the roads.

•  I voted for Senate Bill 2934 that increases penalties for felony dog fighting.

• Senate Bill 2668 would exempt from liability and allow financial institutions to give entry into the safe deposit boxes of deceased customers with an affidavit and death certificate for review of documents and contents.

•  I supported Senate Bill 2473 that gives landlords more rights.

•  I supported Senate Bill 2868 which creates tougher criminal charges against persons charged with delinquency of a minor.

• Senate Bill 2568, Katie’s Law, creates an avenue for the Department of Public Safety to delete from its database the DNA samples of persons who are cleared of criminal charges.

• Senate Bill 2194 would allow junior and community colleges to collect unpaid money from the income tax refunds of debtors.

Terry Burton, R-Newton, represents Senate District 31. Call 601-359-3234 to contact Burton in Jackson.