Council prescribes take-backs

Jun 14 2011 - 11:18pm

OGDEN -- The city council adopted a resolution Tuesday night asking the police department to hold quarterly medication take-back events.

The resolution is an apparent compromise resulting from Police Chief Jon Greiner's ongoing reluctance to put a permanent pharmaceutical collection box in the lobby of the Ogden Public Safety Building at 2186 Lincoln Ave.

Greiner has opposed the idea for safety and administrative reasons.

Although there are 60 permanent pharmaceutical collection bins in law enforcement facilities around the state, including six in Davis County and eight in Weber County, Greiner has been adamant that Ogden's public safety building shouldn't have one.

The federal Drug Enforcement Administration hasn't drafted formal regulations to implement the Safe and Secure Drug Disposal Act, approved last year by Congress, which allows the public to dispose of controlled substances with authorized entities, Greiner said.

As a result, Greiner has questioned whether Utah's drug-collection program administered by the state Department of Environmental Quality is being operated properly.

In addition to a quarterly pharmaceutical collection program, the city will also continue to participate in biannual national prescription take-back events.

The resolution also asks the police department to provide an annual report to the city council of its collection methods and results to determine effectiveness.

The police department will be responsible for determining the cost and logistics for the collection events.

Greiner said he will comply with the council's request for the collection program.

Several city council members voiced support Tuesday night for the collection effort as a way to help residents safely dispose of prescription medications so drugs don't fall into the hands of those who may use them for illicit purposes.

Mayor Matthew Godfrey said he hopes the collection effort will coincide with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration guidelines that explain how individuals can safely dispose of unused medication in their own homes.

People can follow those guidelines so they don't have to stockpile pharmaceuticals and wait for a collection event, he said. More information about FDA guidelines can be found at www.fda.gov.

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