Lawmakers Consider Proposal To Update Idaho's Drug Use Rules

Feb 5, 2015

Lawmakers have moved forward a proposal to update Idaho's rules on drug use by potential law enforcement recruits.

Victor McCraw with Idaho's Peace Officer Standards and Training told a Senate legislative panel on Wednesday that the proposed changes would clarify the requirements regarding drug use and moral turpitude for law enforcement officers seeking certification.

The proposed rule changes would make it possible for POST to accept some applicants who unlawfully used prescription drugs within the past three years. POST Deputy Division Administrator Rory Olsen told the lawmakers that it's getting tougher to find candidates who have never used any kind of drugs. The rule change is intended to provide the POST Council with some leeway when considering candidates who may have occasionally used a prescription pain medicine prescribed for a family member.

Idaho rejects applicants who have used natural or synthetic marijuana at all within the past three years or used the substance on a regular basis within the past five years. That prohibition would remain under the new rule.

Democratic Sen. Grant Burgoyne of Boise said the state's rules are antiquated and should be tweaked to stay competitive, since they could bar recruits who previously used marijuana legally in neighboring states.

Note: In a story Feb. 4 about rules on marijuana use by law enforcement officer recruits, The Associated Press reported erroneously the comments by Victor McCraw with Idaho's Peace Officer Standards. He proposed rule changes on drug use by police recruits, and did not say that law enforcement officials say it's getting harder to hire new officers since neighboring states legalized marijuana. Also, The Associated Press, relying on a Senate committee agenda, erroneously spelled McCraw's name as Macraw.