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Bill sponsored by DA Hestrin that mandates drug treatment and education programs has been signed into law by Gov. Newsom


October 10, 2023

RIVERSIDE – A Senate bill sponsored by Riverside County District Attorney Mike Hestrin that requires individuals convicted of a controlled substance offense to complete a treatment or education program has been signed into law by California Governor Gavin Newsom.

Authored by Sen. Richard D. Roth (D-Riverside), Senate Bill 46 makes significant changes to drug-related legislation, making court-ordered drug treatment and education programs more accessible for people convicted of drug-related offenses, with a focus on improved standards and education. These education and treatment programs would include information about the dangers of controlled substances, including fentanyl and fentanyl-laced drugs.

“I would like to thank Senator Roth for authoring important legislation to assist us in our ongoing efforts to combat drug addiction and drug-related crimes in Riverside County. Taking on the fentanyl epidemic is a multifaceted challenge that demands an all-encompassing approach of public outreach, appropriate prosecution, and legislation,” DA Hestrin said. “Senate Bill 46 plays a pivotal role by offering individuals facing felony drug charges access to court-mandated drug treatment and education programs.”

A short video from DA Hestrin regarding the importance of Senate Bill 46 can be viewed here.

“We are losing thousands of lives each year in our state to opioid overdose and we must do more to address this crisis,” said Senator Roth. “This legislation seeks to help those most susceptible and give them the tools they need, with education and treatment, so they don’t become another statistic and can turn their life around. In order to do this, specific and intentional education and treatment must be required to reduce recidivism and ensure long-term success. I thank the Governor for signing this important legislation.”

Riverside County DA legislative committee members, Managing Deputy District Attorney Ivy Fitzpatrick and Deputy District Attorney Robert Hightower contributed to the success of SB 46.

Newsom signed the measure into law on Sunday, Oct. 9, 2023, and the new law takes effect Jan. 1, 2024