Gress bill aims to crack down on drug enforcement in homeless service areas

(The Center Square) – As Arizona continues to face homelessness issues, Rep. Matt Gress, R-Phoenix, is hoping to crack down on drug-related crime in areas where homeless individuals typically congregate.

House Bill 2782 would make it illegal to “sell or transfer dangerous drugs or narcotic drugs” in a homeless service zone, and would increase the minimum and maximum sentence for drug dealing by one year if it takes place in one of those “drug-free” zones, as well as impose a minimum $2,000 fine for those convicted.

“This legislation is an important step towards reducing chronic homelessness and drug-related crime, ensuring that Arizona’s vulnerable populations are effectively supported while ensuring public safety,” Gress said in a statement on Tuesday. “Establishing accountability within homeless service zones will help safeguard our communities from drug-related crime and offer a more structured and supportive environment for our homeless population to rebuild their lives.”

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