Meth-making could get trickier

A proposal to require a doctor's prescription in Kirksville to buy medications containing pseudoephedrine is gaining steam.

Pseudoephedrine is one of the key ingredients used to make methamphetamine, and Adair County Sheriff Robert Hardwick told KTVO he thinks a local ordinance limiting the purchase of over-the-counter medications containing the ingredient would go a long way toward pushing the meth problem out of our community.

Hardwick said he has seen firsthand how meth-related crimes lead to other unlawful behavior.

"I ran a study on individuals that had been arrested at the sheriff's office,â?? said Hardwick. One-hundred-twenty people arrested. Of the 120 people, 85 of those people, after arrested for drug crimes, went out and committed other crimes in our community."

Three representatives from the Consumer Healthcare Products Association, lobbyists for makers of non-prescription medications, spoke to the Kirksville City Council during Monday's study session.

The three are obviously opposed to requiring a prescription for pseudoephedrine-containing products, but added that doing nothing is not an option and going to the extreme is not an option.

"Prescription-only does make it more difficult for law-abiding citizens to get the medications that are FDA approved, that they've chosen, that they want, said James Gwinner with the Consumer Healthcare Products Association. â??It means that they take time off work to get a doctor's signature. It means that they have to visit the physician."

Gwinner told the council about recently proposed legislation introduced in Jefferson City that would reduce the number of grams of pseudoephedrine that can be legally possessed by an individual.

Adair County Prosecutor Matt Wilson said something has to be done to curb the local meth problem.

"The reality of it is, we don't have the magic wand to wave and make it all go away,â?? said Wilson. â??If nothing else, it's bringing both sides together to start talking about a solution to the problem.

At the end of Monday's presentation, Kirksville Mayor Richard Detweiler instructed city staffers to draft an ordinance that requires a prescription to buy pseudoephedrine products in Kirksville.

At least least three of the five councilmen seemed in favor of the proposal.

The council is then expected to vote on the measure during one of its January meetings.