HARTFORD- State Rep. Mitch Bolinsky (106-Newtown) praised the defeat of a proposal to shrink the size of drug-free zone surrounding schools, daycares and public housing, from 1,500 feet to 200 feet.
Bolinsky and other legislators on the Education committee voted down the measure April 24th, with it failing 11-17. A year ago, Bolinsky gave an impassioned speech on the floor of the House of Representatives against the same proposal.
Rep. Bolinsky said, “The proposal sought to shrink the drug-free zones in every community throughout Connecticut regardless of the population size.”
“What was revealed during debate is that the current 1500 feet school drug zone works for a great number of our towns in Connecticut including Newtown. Let’s not give kids mixed signals on whether drug use close to school grounds is not as bad as it used to be,” said Bolinsky.
The current penalty for using or possessing with intent to use drug paraphernalia (other than in relation to less than one-half ounce of marijuana) is a class C misdemeanor punishable by up to three months in prison, a fine of up to $500 or both. Delivering, possessing or manufacturing them with intent to deliver is a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison, a fine of $2,000, or both. The enhanced penalties mandate one year in prison for using illegal drug paraphernalia in a Drug-Free Zone, two years in prison for possession, and three years in prison for selling, manufacturing or distributing.