S.B. 485 amends the statute in the Uniform Controlled Substances Act that lists Schedule IV controlled substances. The amendments add "Sibutramine" to subsection (d) of the schedule and "Butorphanol" to subsection (e).
The House Committee amendments add gamma hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) and butyrolactone to Schedule IV of the Uniform Controlled Substances Act, and a Committee of the Whole amendment added the substance, ketamine hydrochloride. Further House action added a new section to the bill that is the statute specifying those substances listed in Schedule V of the Uniform Controlled Substances Act. The amendment changes the substance, ephedrine, as it is currently scheduled. As the law now stands, ephedrine is a schedule V substance if it is the sole component of a product. The amendment makes any form of ephedrine a controlled substance unless it is a component of a product that meets the requirements of the exception contained in the amendment.
S.B. 485 would become effective on publication in the Kansas Register.
S.B. 485 in its original form was requested for introduction by the Board of Pharmacy pursuant to K.S.A. 65-4102. The substances proposed in the original bill to be scheduled under Schedule IV would place the Kansas law in conformance with the federal controlled substances schedules. One of the drugs that would be scheduled as a Schedule IV substance in Kansas has already been so scheduled at the federal level. Notice of proposed scheduling of the other has been published in the Federal Register and the period for submitting comments ended in January. Scheduling should take place within the next few months. The Kansas Pharmacists Association supported S.B. 485 during hearings on the bill.
The House Committee amendments were requested by an attorney assigned to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation who had made the same recommendations to the Senate Committee. The substance known as GHB is a central nervous system depressant which can produce euphoric and hallucinatory states and which is believed by some users to act as a growth hormone releasing agent used to stimulate muscle growth. Originally sold in health food stores as a food supplement, GHB came under FDA scrutiny as a result of medical reports of medical problems associated with overdoses and abuse of the substance. In 1990, the FDA banned the use of GHB except under FDA-approved, physician-supervised protocols. There is currently a new drug investigation in which GHB is one component in a compound under investigation for the treatment of narcolepsy. Since the FDA has not approved the substance, its manufacture and distribution, except for approved research investigations, is unlawful in the United States. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is currently in the process of studying whether GHB meets the criteria for scheduling under the federal controlled substance legislation because of its increasing abuse for the euphoric effects it produces. The substance, according to the DEA, is popular with a wide range of abusers including high school and college students and body builders. Recently GHB has been alleged to be a factor in "date rape." The DEA has completed its evaluation of the appropriateness of scheduling GHB and has sent it to the Department of Health and Human Services for scientific and medical evaluation and a recommendation. Eleven states have scheduled GHB for state purposes in schedules ranging from Schedule I to IV in response to allegations of use of the substance in "date rape" cases. Other states have chosen to deal with the "date rape" issue through criminalizing the act rather than by making GHB a controlled substance. Neither the DEA nor other states have dealt with the substance butyrolactone, nor is there any information or study of the substance available that the DEA was able to reference.
Ketamine hydrochloride, another substance alleged to have been involved in instances of "date rape," added to Schedule IV by the House amendments is an anesthetic used in veterinary medicine for minor or brief surgical procedures that do not require skeletal muscle relaxation. The substance and compounds containing the substance are used primarily as an anesthetic in surgery on cats. It is injected intramuscularly. Current federal law restricts the use of the drug to use by or on order of a licensed veterinarian.
The House amendments that make additional forms of the substance, Ephedrine, subject to Schedule V of the Uniform Controlled Substance Act were originally requested because the substance is a component in the illicit manufacture of methamphetamines. Kansas is alleged to be number three in the illicit production of such substances. The issue of illicit diversion of chemicals or substances for the purpose of production of illegal drugs such as methamphetamine or other controlled or nonappoved substances is addressed in S.B. 667 which creates the Kansas Chemical Control Act. The penalties under S.B. 667 are more far-reaching than those under the Uniform Controlled Substances Act.
The original bill would have had no fiscal effect on state operations.
1. *Supplemental notes are prepared by the Legislative Research Department and do not express legislative intent. The supplemental note and fiscal note for this bill may be accessed on the Internet at http://www.ink.org/public/legislative/fulltext-bill.html.