Casperson: Designer drugs like K2, Spice one step closer to ban

LANSING, Mich.—The state Senate approved a bill Thursday that would allow the director of the state Department of Community Health (DCH) and the administrator of the Board of Pharmacy to label specific drugs as controlled substances if they pose imminent danger to users.

Senate Bill 789 stems from the grave and growing threat of “designer” drugs such as K2, Spice, and Bath Salts, which pose severe health risks and are increasingly popular among young adults. With this measure, DCH and the Board of Pharmacy could act so long as there is 10 days’ notice of a public hearing to consider scheduling the substances.

“The Legislature has attempted to ban these so-called designer drugs altogether. However, the process has stalled and this provides an alternative method to prevent their spread,” said Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba. “We simply cannot afford to continue to let K2, Spice and similar substances sit on store shelves while young adults in the Upper Peninsula are sitting in hospital rooms because of them. These designer drugs are a public health threat and they must be stopped.”

A person who is found in possession of certain temporarily scheduled controlled substances could be guilty of a felony and imprisoned.

“Senator Casperson was very instrumental in the passing of this legislation,” said Sen. Rick Jones, R-Grand Ledge, who sponsored the measure. “As a former sheriff, I couldn’t be happier to have him standing side-by-side with me to stop these deadly drugs in the U.P. and around the state of Michigan.”

SB 789 passed unanimously and now goes to the state House for approval.