Drug and Alcohol Testing State Laws Popular in 2010: BLS

A report in BLS' January 2011 "Monthly Labor Review" says drug and alcohol testing was one of the most active areas of legislation during the year.

A summary of state labor laws enacted during 2010 shows that drug and alcohol testing was one of the most active areas of legislation during the year. The authors -- John J. Fitzpatrick, Jr., State Standards Team Leader in the Office of Performance, Budget, and Departmental Liaison, Wage and Hour Division, U.S. Department of Labor; James L. Perine, compliance specialist on the State Standards Team; and compliance specialists Bridget Dutton and Kenneth Floyd -- indicates six states put new substance abuse laws on their books. The report covers laws enacted between Dec. 1, 2009, and Sept. 30, 2010.

The list of substance abuse laws includes:

  • Organizations in Utah that operate a storage or transfer facility that is engaged in the transportation of high-level nuclear waste or the transportation of radioactive waste greater than class C are now required to establish a mandatory drug and alcohol testing program as a condition for hiring or for the continued employment of any employee. Also, state procurement units in Utah may not enter into a construction contract unless it (1) requires the contractor to maintain a drug and alcohol testing policy that applies to the covered individuals during the construction project, (2) requires the contractor to post a notice to covered individuals that the contractor has a drug and alcohol testing policy, and (3) subjects the covered individuals to random drug and alcohol testing.
  • The Arizona Racing Commission's director may allow anyone whose role requires direct, hands-on contact with horses or greyhounds to submit to a drug or alcohol test if racing stewards have reason to believe that the employee is under the influence of, or unlawfully in possession of, any prohibited substance. Arizona's State Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts Commission may conduct tests for the use of alcohol and drugs that have been determined by the commission to impair contestants.
  • Delaware's new law prohibits the State Department of Health and Social Services from hiring anyone for employment at the State Psychiatric Center without a drug test and criminal background check. Delaware also enacted legislation requiring drug testing for employees of the State Department of Services for Children, Youth, and Their Families.
  • Missouri now requires drug and alcohol testing for employees of contractors and subcontractors as a condition of their being permitted to bid on projects to build elementary and secondary education facilities.
  • Applicants to be direct care staff members at state psychiatric hospitals or developmental centers in New Jersey must consent to and undergo drug testing for controlled dangerous substances.
  • Tennessee now requires all motor carriers in the state that provide passenger transportation service to eight or more individuals to conduct a program of mandatory random drug testing for the operators of their motor vehicles in accordance with DOT regulations.

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