Council suspended rules that require three readings and passed the ordinance as an emergency.
Before passage, Portsmouth City Solicitor Mike Jones took the time to answer a question he had previously received from First Ward Councilman Kevin Johnson as to whether the ordinance was in line with the aspects of the bill currently before the state legislature dealing with the same issue.
"It is somewhat more restrictive," Jones said. "However, as you know, the proposed House Bill 93 has passed the House and is currently in the Senate. At last check it was in committee. So there is a possibility of changes."
Before any entity will be licensed to operate in the city there is a laundry list of requirements including the name, address and phone numbers of stockholders, members and/or partners; the name, address, and phone number of the physician or physicians who are responsible for prescribing or dispensing of prescriptions for controlled substances, and malpractice insurance.
Written verification is also required that the facility has registered with the Ohio Automated Rx Reporting System (OARRS) of the Board of Pharmacy, and they must accompany their application with a license fee of $1,000. Within 30 days of the first anniversary of the issuance of the initial permit, they also must submit an application for renewal. After the first year, that process would require application every three years.
These regulations apply to new pain clinics and those already operating in the city.
Another section of the ordinance calls for the Department of Health to make periodic, unannounced inspections of the premises whenever it deems necessary and in no event less than twice per year.
Scioto County Attorney John McHenry wrote the ordinance and presented it to Jones for fine-tuning.
FRANK LEWIS may be reached at (740) 353-3101, ext. 232, or firstname.lastname@example.org.