SECTION 1. Chapter 94C of the General Laws is hereby amended by inserting after section 24B the following section:-
Section 24C. (a) Every person that manufactures any opioid drug for distribution, dispensing or use in the commonwealth, shall pay an assessment equal to the product of (i) the ratio of the manufacturer’s annual aggregate distribution and dispensing of opioid drugs in the commonwealth and (ii) the total annual aggregate distribution and dispensing of opioid drugs in the commonwealth. The total assessment amount from all manufacturers shall not exceed $15,000,000. For the purposes of this section the term “opioid drug” means any drug having an addiction-forming or addiction-sustaining liability similar to morphine or being capable of conversion into a drug having such addiction-forming or addiction-sustaining liability.
(b) Annually, before October 1, the department shall establish each person’s or manufacturer’s liability to pay the assessment. Each person or manufacturer shall pay the assessment amount to the department for deposit in the Opioid Treatment and Addiction Prevention Fund established in this section. The department shall specify by regulation appropriate mechanisms, including use of the prescription monitoring program provided for in section 24A and the data provided for in section 24B, to provide for determination of the person’s or manufacturer’s liability for the assessment, including requirements for data to be submitted by such person or manufacturer.
(c) The department shall establish by regulation an appropriate mechanism for enforcing an assessment payor's liability to the fund if an assessment payor does not make a payment to the fund. Such enforcement mechanism may include assessment of interest on the unpaid liability at a rate not to exceed an annual percentage rate of 18 per cent and late fees or penalties at a rate not to exceed 5 per cent per month.
(d) There shall be established and set up on the books of the commonwealth a fund to be known as the Opioid Treatment and Addiction Prevention Fund, in this section called the fund, which shall be administered by the department. Expenditures from the fund shall not be subject to appropriation. The purpose of the fund shall be to provide for: (i) prevention, treatment, management and research of opioid addiction and (ii) research to reduce barriers to effective pain management alternatives to opioid drugs.
(e) The fund shall consist of: (i) all assessments paid under this section; and (ii) all property and securities acquired by and through the use of monies belonging to the fund. All interest earned on any property, security, penalties or other amounts in the fund shall be deposited or retained in the fund.
(f) The department shall expend amounts in the fund consistent with the requirements of this section. The department shall expend not more than $15,000,000 annually from the fund.
SECTION 2. The department of public health shall promulgate regulations to implement this act within 180 days of the effective date of this act.
SECTION 3. Section 1 shall take effect on June 30, 2020.
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