Illinois has increased the penalties for some drug offenses.  

Gov. Pat Quinn signed three drug-related pieces of legislation Saturday. They take effect Jan. 1.  

Manufacturing methamphetamine within 1,000 feet of any school property will now be a Class X felony, punishable by a minimum of six years in prison. It was previously considered a Class 1 felony.  

A year ago, Illinois officials had reason to be confident. As lethal and easily concocted methamphetamine overwhelmed rural communities and spread to larger cities, state lawmakers moved to restrict access to some over-the-counter cold medicines containing ephedrine and pseudoephedrine, key ingredients in the homemade drug widely known as crystal meth.

Illinois, it seemed, was ahead of the game through smart politics and smart law enforcement.