A new state grant program will help communities across the state get rid of some bad medicine.
A dozen local governments across the state will share $95,000 in state grant money to help carry out "clean sweep" programs for old prescription drugs. Those programs will collect expired or unused medications to be destroyed, usually by incinerating them.
Jane Larsen with the Department of Ag, Trade, and Consumer Protection says it's important to safely dispose of old drugs, because of an increased risk they'll end up in water supplies if you flush them or throw them away. She points to recent studies that have found trace amounts of pharmaceuticals in water supplies.
Larsen says keeping old medicine in the house can also make it easier for children to access to dangerous drugs, which could result in poisoning or an overdose.
Interest in "clean sweep" programs appears to be growing statewide. Larsen says 22 communities applied for state assistance to set them up.