Sen. Webber seeks harsher punishments for fentanyl trafficking as part of Safer Communities initiative

Sen. Webber seeks harsher punishments for fentanyl trafficking as part of Safer Communities initiative

LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Michael Webber on Thursday introduced Senate Bill 726 to increase penalties for the creation, production and distribution of fentanyl and other classified substances as part of a larger plan by Senate Republicans focused on protecting Michiganders from national border security issues.

“Failed federal policies have resulted in the exponential flood of fentanyl into our local communities and the results have been tragic,” said Webber, R-Rochester Hills. “I believe the Legislature has a duty to work toward bipartisan commonsense solutions to help save lives.”

According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, illicit fentanyl is primarily smuggled into the United States and seven out of every 10 pills seized contain a lethal dose of the drug. It is mixed with other drugs to increase potency and is approximately 100 times more potent than morphine, making just two milligrams of fentanyl fatal. The Centers for Disease Control Prevention reports that synthetic opioids like fentanyl are the primary driver of overdose deaths in the United States.

Just three weeks after six kilograms of fentanyl were seized near Paw Paw in 2023, the DEA captured 20 kilograms of fentanyl in Oakland County, marking the state’s largest fentanyl bust to date enough to kill approximately 10 million people. Although these busts highlight extreme cases, fentanyl is flooding into countless communities across the state as upwards of 3,000 Michiganders die each year due to drug overdose.

“Fentanyl is invading our neighborhoods and killing our loved ones. Increasing penalties against those who dare to smuggle this deadly poison into Michigan is just one tool the Legislature has to help safeguard our communities and we must do more in the fight to protect the people of this state,” Webber said.

The full Senate Republican Strong Borders, Safe Communities plan includes increased penalties for the creation, manufacturing, delivery, or possession of fentanyl and would require every Michigan community to enforce state and federal immigration laws, ending the practice of so-called “sanctuary cities.” Additionally, the plan calls on the president and Congress to immediately and fully resolve the border crisis.


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