Nassau County Alternate Deputy Presiding Officer Denise Ford introduced legislation designed to help combat the opioid epidemic. The new legislation will expand Nassau County’s current social host law to apply to controlled substances, including opioids. Currently, Nassau’s social host law is only applicable for alcohol.By including “controlled substances” within the Nassau County Social Host Law, parents, guardians, siblings, friends, and anyone else over the age of eighteen will be held accountable for the consumption of controlled substances by anyone under age twenty-one, or failing to take reasonable corrective action upon learning of the consumption of drugs, at his or her owned, rented, or otherwise controlled private residence. The crime is considered an unclassified misdemeanor, and the fines for a first offense include $250. A second offense will accrue a fine of $500, and a third offense, and all offenses thereafter will be $1,000 and/or imprisonment not to exceed one year.
“I’m proud to join Legislators Schaefer and McKevitt in introducing this legislation,” said Alternate Deputy Presiding Officer Ford. “The opioid issue must be addressed, and my colleagues and I will explore every option to combat this problem.”
The original Social Host law was passed by the Nassau County Legislature on July 9, 2007. It prohibits any person over the age of eighteen who owns, rents, or otherwise controls a private residence from knowingly allowing the consumption of alcohol by individuals under the age of 21 on such premises, or failing to take reasonable corrective action upon learning of the consumption of alcohol. The new legislation will be voted on in March.