Baltimore County Councilman Kevin Kamenetz announced plans yesterday to ban the sale, possession and distribution of synthetic marijuana sold on the market as “Spice” and “K2.” Kamenetz said he will introduce legislation at the county council’s legislative meeting on September 7 and the proposed measure will go up for a vote on October 4.

Spice or K2, which is currently legal, is sold as incense in stores. But the councilman said that the product is usually dried leaves like parsley sprayed with the compounds JWH-018 or JWH-073 which when smoked and ingested produces similar effects to THC, the active ingredient in marijuana. However side effects include intense headaches, high blood pressure, increased heart rate, hallucination, and vomiting.

“It’s becoming a national epidemic. Several states have already banned it,” said Kamenetz. “The packaging says incense – do no not ingest – but I’m pretty certain that 100 percent of the purchasers are using it and smoking it.”

Kamenetz said that he is confident that the measure will pass as he has the support of several of his council members and local business owners and similar statutes have already been passed across the bridge in Ocean City.

“I’m a parent,” said Kamenetz “it’s hard enough keeping our children away from negative influences that are otherwise legal. I think it’s appropriate for the county to step in when there is a health issue involved as well.”

 

Melissa Jones

Special to the AFRO