A lawmaker in Oregon has proposed making nicotine a Schedule III controlled substance in the state, placing it in the same category as many prescription tranquilizers and stimulants.


The bill, introduced by Democratic Rep. Mitch Greenlick, would require anyone who wished to smoke a cigarette to first obtain a prescription from a doctor. Nicotine-containing products would only be available from pharmacies.

Those caught using nicotine without a prescription could face up to one year in prison and a $6,250 fine under the proposed law.

Greenlick has been pushing the bill unsuccessfully since 2009, and doesn't believe the legislation has any chance of passing. He has previously said the bill was just meant to make the harms of nicotine a public issue.

"My ultimate goal is not to make it illegal,” he explained to Northwest Watchdog last year. “That’s just not going to happen. But my ultimate goal is to reduce smoking.”

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[Doctor breaks cigarette via Shutterstock]