Governor of Maine wants to charge drug users revived by Narcan

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PORTLAND, Maine -- At least one person died every day from a drug overdose in Maine in 2016.

But thanks to antidote drugs like Narcan, many drug users are being saved.

Maine Gov. Paul LePage wants to force communities to charge people who repeatedly overdose and are given an opioid antidote, the Bangor Daily News reported.

According to the governor's bill, cities, towns, and counties that don't pursue the money could be fined $1,000.

Doctors in Maine say the bill would make it harder to stop the state's drug epidemic, the paper reported.

"I don't see how you could fine the fire department for administering a life-saving service when you know if you don't do it, this person is going to die," Thomas Connolly, Sanford Police Chief, told WMTW in Maine.

But many taxpayers in Maine agree with the governor.

"I think it's not a bad idea, just because it's their choice," Tyler Janiack said.

"Someone' there to save me again," he said. "They're just going to keep doing it. I think if you think punishing them for it, they might start, hopefully start realizing it and thinking."

But many first responders say you can't put a price tag on saving someone's life.

"That's a life-saving measure and it would be no different saying well we're not going to do CPR on you unless you pay us $100," Connolly told WMTW.

According to WMTW, a dose of Narcan currently costs about $37.50.

Drug users would not be charged for the first dose of Narcan -- but would be charged for any repeat doses.

According to the Bangor Daily News, spokespeople for the governor and the Department of Health and Human Services did not respond to requests for comment about why the bill was introduced, or how it would affect communities or counties that get naloxone, commonly sold as Narcan, through grants or donations.