Among the first things the Texas Legislature should do when it convenes next week is begin the process of decriminalizing fentanyl test strips, little ribbons of paper that can keep people from accidentally killing themselves by overdose.

Given that Galveston County has one of the highest rates of overdose in the state, it would be appropriate for state Sen. Mayes Middleton, state Rep. Terri Leo-Wilson, or both, to file such a bill.

Michael A. Smith: 409-683-5206;


(9) comments

Gary Scoggin

I agree. Hopefully, we’ll see this legislation from Mayes and Terri.

Noel Spencer

I hope our elected officals take this serious and get the legislation passed to allow for strips.

Wayne Holt

Users must really have a death wish: fentanyl is many times stronger than heroin and up to 100 more powerful than morphine. You might as well play Russian roulette.

Is it moral for government to facilitate drug use, whatever that means here? In this instance, the moral thing to do is to make legal the means of avoiding a personal and societal harm. That seems like a reasonable effort compared to most government projects.

Carlos Ponce

"That small lifesaving measure had been out of reach until recently because Gov. Greg Abbott had opposed it." That's misleading. The bills brought before the state legislature wanted to legalize ALL DRUG PARAPHERNALIA, not just the test strips. They ALL failed in the legislature. None ever made it to the governor's desk. The current bill addresses just the test strips.

Gary Scoggin

I wasn’t aware of that, Carlos. Thanks for the context.

Carlos Ponce

Let me repeat last month's post:

Carlos Ponce Dec 13, 2022 10:11pm

Fentanyl testing strips are considered drug paraphernalia outlawed by the Texas Controlled Substances Act of 1989.

Bills to legalize [only] the testing strips have never been presented to Governor Abbott in the past. The last bill 2021 HB 1178, was too broad, "removing criminal penalties for the possession of drug paraphernalia under the Texas Controlled Substances Act" not just the testing strips but ALL drug paraphernalia.

[Texas HB 1178 2021]

Bailey Jones

[thumbup] Michael.

Jim Forsythe

If it passes, this link will show you how to use the test strips.

Don Schlessinger


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