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New Mexican (Newspaper) - January 20, 2005, Santa Fe, New Mexico Oklahomas answer to meth abuse Lock up cold medicines Thursday January 20 2005 THE NEW MEXICAN A3 By KELLY KURT The Associated Press TULSA Okla After years of locking up methara phetamine makers only to see illegal drug labs multiply on urban stovetops and country roads Oklahoma got tough It locked up the meth mak ers cold medicine The state banned overthe counter sales of Sudafed and other decongestants used to produce meth and ordered that the medicines be placed behind pharmacy counters Ten months later methlab seizures in Oklahoma are down more than 80 percent State officials believe many clandestine cooks have closed their kitchens because of the crackdown on pseudoephed rine To see the sort of diminu tion weve seen there is abso lutely no other said Lonnie Wright who heads Oklahomas drug agency Now other states are look ing to lock up their pseudo ephedrine too Oklahoma and several other states have limited the amount of pseudoephedrine customers can buy at one time but Okla homa went further by requir ing that the drug be dispensed by a pharmacist Customers do not need a prescription for but they have to produce ID and sign for the drug Oklahoma averaged 105 methlab busts a month before the law took effect last April By November the num ber had dropped to 19 Those numbers persuaded Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon to push for a simi lar measure there This is a relatively small discomfort for the said Nixon whose state lim ited how much pseudoephed rine a customer could buy only to see the number of labs surge In Oklahoma pseudoephed rine can no longer be sold in groceries and convenience stores Signs on empty drug store shelves direct people looking for relief from stuffy heads to the pharmacist The law applies only to pills con taining pseudoephedrine Gel and liquid forms which nor mally are not used to make meth are still available over the counter Some people grumble when told they will have to show ID said Jim Brown owner of FreelandBrown Pharmacy in Tulsa But when you tell them why they really dont he said Methmaking has left ugly scars on communities large and small in Oklahoma Chil dren have been found playing among the volatile and highly toxic waste of their parents drug making Addicts haunt farmland looking to steal anhydrous ammonia fertil izer which they use to con vert pseudoephedrine into a potent high Oklahomas law bears the names of three state troopers killed in confrontations with suspected meth users Among them was Nik Green who used to weep over the people he had arrested who were caught in meths iron grip his widow said He said I really feel like this is one of Satans said Linda Green who helped push for the law after Green was shot while investigating a suspicious vehicle on a rural road Along with legislators in Missouri lawmakers in neighboring Arkansas Kan sas and Texas also are looking to restrict overthecounter pseudoephedrine When you see Arkansas Kansas Missouri and Texas get on board with the con trols I think youll see Okla homas numbers drop said Tom Cunningham drug taskforce coordinator for the Oklahoma District Attorneys Council Politicians in Washington Idaho Minnesota Indiana Iowa Kentucky Connecticut Georgia and Tennessee have also pushed for laws requir ing pharmacists to dispense pseudoephedrine or will be considering such legislation this year Oregons pharmacy board in October approved restric tions patterned on the Okla homa law And Illinois began requiring stores this month to lock pseudoephedrine tablets in cabinets or behind coun ters Pfizer the maker of Sudafed does not oppose restrictions on the medica tion said spokesman Jay Kosminsky Every state has got to get the balance right between access to legitimate consumers and preventing access to he said But the company believes it is possible to secure the drug in groceries and other stores not just pharmacies he said Meanwhile Pfizer plans this month to introduce a new form of Sudafed made with out pseudoephedrine Black Tie and Boots Ball the hottest ticket on a cold night Chicago Tribune WASHINGTON In her black cowboy hat and fancy gown Susie HitchcockHall of Midland Texas came to celebrate President Bushs inauguration and also to do a little business At the Texas State Societys Black Tie and Boots Ball Wednesday night she had set up a table filled with candy confections she manufactures back in Midland plus pack ages of Nuts About George mixed nuts And she was not alone This was not just a ball where Texas political partygoers par tied but also a big emporium where they could buy Texas goods everything from food to fur coats And com mercialism mixed nicely with politics No one appeared to take offense as they jammed a hotel to celebrate Bushs inau guration today Its a feelgood evening for HitchcockHall said She predicted that Bushs second term is going to be easier In the first term youre busy figuring out the The day before the inau guration was a busy one for Bush But a cold snap and a few inches of snow prompted event organizers to shorten a celebration earlier Wednes day on the Ellipse behind the White House The Ellipse event was called A Celebration of Free and Bush told those in attendance that his inaugural speech Thursday would focus on freedom This is the cause that unites our country and gives hope to the world and will lead us to a future of he said as his father and mother using lap warmers to ward off the cold watched proudly We have a calling from beyond the stars to stand for New Mexicans on inauguration lists Santa Fe City Councilor David Pfeffer isnt the only local Democrat going to President Bushs inauguration today Santa Fe Mayor Larry Del gado and Espanola Mayor Richard Lucero also are expected in Washing ton for the event according to Sen Pete Domenicis office According to lists provided by Domenicis office and the stale Republi can Party other New Mexicans attending the inauguration include state Sen Joe Carrara state GOP Chairman Allen Wen and his wife Becky GOP National Committee member George Buffett and his wife Jeanette GOP National Committee member Rosie Tripp state GOP executive direc tor Greg Graves Bernalillo County Republican Chairman Ken Zangara and his wife Kathy Farmington Mayor Bill Standley former Human Services secretarydesignate Robin DozierOtten and former Albuquerque city councilor Vickie Perea and her husband Serafin Other names on the lists include John Quinn Leon and Dorothy Romero Sheridan Fuss Paul Yarbrough Frank and Kathy Cooper Denis Simon Brent DePont Jack Fortner Phil Marcus Henry and Karin Vallo Bill Miera Robert and Sue Unthank Alexandra Rose Athanasius Vajia nos Ken and Barbara Longeway Anthony and Ceil Levatino Sara Lister Eric Lien John Guerin Tito Madrid Jennifer Madrid Bruce Filpot Mary Sue Badami John Cummins Heather Philpot Karen Anderson Pharah Forsythe Barbara Romero Mark Carol Coffing Scott Darnell Alexis Val dez Paul Atencio Chris Atencio Larry Sur Rod and Pearl Montoya Anna Muller Jonathan Tso Jesse D Dompreh Para Forsythe Darren Kelley Beatrice Armijo Karen Bayless and Tucker Bayless The New Mexican freedom and America will always be faithful to that he said He also declared Inaugura tion is a time of unity for our country With the campaign behind us Americans lift up our sights to the years ahead and to the great goals we will achieve for our country I am eager and ready for the work The unprecedented security along with the cold weather and snow created an unusual scene in Washington With many streets closed down town partygoers found the best way to get around was to use the subway system OFF BEliORA HlttONI HOME TREASURES BEDDING Sanbusco Center 982329H Fine Furniture Gc Friendly Entran Problems Visit or Call 4714821 Bnckman Water Diversion Project Environmental Impact Statement WHAT Open House Sessions on I he Kuckniiin 11atitDiversion Project Draft Knvironmcnlul Impact Statement The Smti Fe National Forest of the Forest Service and the Taos Field Office oflhc Bureau of Land Management BLM invite the public to attend two open house sessions on a Draft Knvironmenta Impact Statement DHIS for the Buckman Water Diversion Project The DEIS discloses an analysis of the effects of a proposal to divert water from the Rio Grande and pump it across Federal lands managed by the FS and BLM The 60day formal public comment period on the DHIS opened on Dee 17 2004 and will close on Feb 14 2005 WHY WHEN WHERE The USOA Forest Service and the USDI Bureau of Land Management want to share information about and solicit public feedback on the analysis and preferred alternative identified in the Wednesday January Open I louse Sessions to to Gcnovcva Chavez Community Center 3221 Rodeo Road Santa Fe New Mexico 87505 For more information or to submit yovir comments please contact Mr Sandy llurloeker NIPA Coordinator Department of AgricultureForest Service Fispafiola Ranger District Box 3307 Hspaftola New Mexico 87533 Email fhnw MS lax 505 Or visit our wch silcs al or Bl At Louisiana high court reinstates antigaymarriage amendment The Associated Press NEW ORLEANS The Louisiana Supreme Court on Wednesday unanimously rein stated an antigaymarriage amendment to the state con stitution that was overwhelm ingly approved by the voters in September The high court reversed a ruling by a state district judge who struck down the defense ofmarriage amendment in October on the grounds that the measure dealt with more than one subject in violation of the Louisiana Constitution But the Supreme Court said Each provision of the amendment is germane to the single object of defense of The amendment was put on the ballot by the Legislature and approved by 78 percent of the voters Eleven other states adopted similar amendments in the fall elections Were obviously said Michael Johnson an attorney for Alliance Defense Fund which argued for the amendments legality Gayrights activist and state legislative candidate Chris Daigle called the ruling an outrage saying it does nothing to defend marriage High divorce rates high adultery rates poverty lack of education parents having to hold more than one job those are the real threats to he said But other opponents of the amendment said they were pleased the court noted it would not affect the rights of unmarried couples gay or heterosexual In striking down the amend ment Judge William Morvant of Baton Rouge had ruled it would also prevent the state from recognizing common law relationships domestic partnerships and civil unions between both gay and hetero sexual couples At issue was a provision that stated A legal status identi cal or substantially similar to that of marriage for unmar ried individuals shall not be But the high court said the amendment would not stop unmarried couples from buy ing property together making medical decisions for each other or leaving thenestates to one another Randy Evans an attorney for the gayrights group Forum for Equality called the high courts ruling a decision worthy of Legislative backers of the amendment said although gay marriages were already banned by state law the amendment was needed to ensure courts would not authorize such marriages as happened in Massachusetts Jackson to respond to leaked transcripts The Associated Press LOS ANGELES The judge in the Michael Jackson molestation case has allowed the singer to make a state ment responding to grand jury transcripts leaked to ABC News according to media reports Wednesday ABC News reported Jack son has recorded an inter view with Fox News reporter and talkshow host Geraldo Rivera in response to the leaked transcripts A Fox News spokesperson confirmed an interview with Rivera has been taped and Jackson read a statement approved by Superior Court FANCY BEARDED PRACONS 28O1 CERRIULOS4715O71 Judge Rodney S Melville The statement was included in a larger interview unre lated to the case and when it would air was not known the spokesperson said ABC News last week reported on the transcript which includes graphic details of the alleged child molestation including that Jacksons accuser told a grand jury the pop star closed his eyes tightly while molest ing him Jackson attorney Thomas Mesereau Jr said in a state ment last week that the defense strongly objected to the leak of sealed grand jury testimony Jackson 46 was indicted modern autoworks in April on multiple counts of molestation and a count of conspiracy involving child abduction false imprison ment and extortion He has pleaded not guilty Grand jury transcripts nor mally are made public in Cali fornia 10 days after theyre received by a defendant The judge however has kept the Jackson transcripts sealed along with most other docu ments in the case Before jury selection in the case begins Jan 31 Mel ville is to rule on a number of motions including one filed Tuesday by a journalist who wants the judge to deny prosecutors request that he testify 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