Gov. Kathy Hochul has finally made a correct public-safety call, vetoing a useless measure meant to stem the tide of fentanyl killing New Yorkers by . . . assembling a task force to mull over the issue.
Fentanyl overdose deaths nationwide are up around 500% since 2015. In New York, some 78% of all overdose deaths are linked to fentanyl, and overdoses killed 1,223 people in the first half of last year, a massive rise over the same period in 2020.
So make no mistake: This is a crisis. And it demands real solutions, not a blue-ribbon panel.
Need more evidence of just how toothless the measure was? It won unanimous passage in both Senate and Assembly this spring.
Which means that the very same crime-loving Twitter Democrats behind our disastrous criminal-justice reforms signed onto it — almost a guarantee it would have no real effect.
Remember, too, that among the most concrete “solutions” so far offered by New York to this crisis are centered around so-called “harm reduction,” i.e. letting addicts kill themselves with governmental help.
No, a real solution would be twofold.
One major part would require scrapping our insane bail-reform laws. Fighting fentanyl (a cheap drug) would involve arresting, prosecuting and imprisoning low-level drug offenders — many of whom can now get no-bail release.
But the real effort has to be federal.
The fentanyl wave is a direct result of President Biden’s disastrous failure on immigration policy. This poison is sent by cartels into our country through our porous southern border and flows from there to cities and towns around the United States, killing as it goes. (It almost took the like of a 10-month-old baby in San Francisco this week.)
So kudos to Hochul for clearing a little of the smoke here. But color us skeptical she can get anything real done on the fentanyl crisis to follow up.