Unger said Wednesday that lawmakers would look for other ways to help property owners affected by the meth lab problem. He acknowledged that meth cleanup is expensive.
"It creates a toxic-waste zone," Unger said. "It creates a dangerous situation, a hazard to the community."
Unger said the Legislature could set up a "meth lab cleanup fund" and put a set amount of money into it each year.
"When the money runs out, it runs out," he said. "It would be something we could better monitor."
West Virginia police officers seized 533 meth labs this year, a record number. They found the clandestine labs in 45 of West Virginia's 55 counties.
Last month, the Senate passed legislation (SB6) to reduce meth labs by requiring a prescription for cold medications containing pseudoephedrine, a key meth-making ingredient. The bill would exempt so-called "tamper-resistant" pseudoephedrine products that can't be easily converted into meth.
"The logic of it is, if Senate Bill 6 works, then we won't need the funds for [meth lab cleanup]," Unger said.
That bill and the crime victims fund legislation next move to the House Judiciary Committee.
Reach Eric Eyre at erice...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4869.