The Haverhill City Council is expected to receive a draft ordinance banning the sale of bath salts, otherwise known as synthetic marijuana, at its regular meeting next Tuesday.
As with all proposed law changes, the Council is expected to place the ordinance from Mayor James J. Fiorentini on file for two weeks. The mayor said he proposed the ordinance after learning of “overdose” deaths in other cities.
“All throughout New England, there has been a growing problem with so-called ‘synthetic marijuana.’ These products, commercially known as ‘bath salts’ have resulted in several deaths in neighboring cities including Manchester, New Hampshire. While this has not yet become a problem in Haverhill, we shouldn’t wait until it is. The time to act is now, before there is an overdose in the city,” Fiorentini said Friday.
The proposed law prohibits people or businesses from selling synthetic cannabinoids, often labeled as “herbal incense,” “potpourri,” “bath salts,” “jewelry cleaner,” “fake pot” or “smokable incense.” The draft ordinance requires a written warning, but no other penalties for the first offense and a fine of $300 or other criminal action for any subsequent offenses. Haverhill police will be charged with enforcement.
“The rise in deaths due to the sale of this protect in unacceptable, this product needs to be banned from any storefront,” Fiorentini said.