Gov. Peter Shumlin announced today that the Department of Health has issued an emergency rule to further crack down on dangerous drugs commonly known as "bath salts.' In addition to expanding the specific list of bath salts and "fake weed' compounds now illegal to sell, manufacture or possess in Vermont, the new rule includes broader language to ban derivatives -- a move designed to include changes in the chemical structures made by those attempting to evade laws regulating these substances.
"Today's rule not only covers the latest round of bath salts to hit Vermont's shelves, but is vital in preventing these manufacturers from tweaking the chemical compounds slightly to avoid arrest," said Gov. Shumlin. "Vermont has been outlawing the bath salts based on chemical composition as they hit the market, but dealers simply add new chemicals to avoid current laws."
The previous rule was announced in July, banning 86 dangerous designer drugs.
The current rules change will be in effect for 120 days while the Health Department seeks to make it permanent through the administrative rulemaking process. The Governor said synthetic stimulants can cause hallucinations, violence, paranoia, seizures, psychosis, and even death. They also have the potential to be addictive. He said anyone selling these drugs to the public are fully aware of the risks and must be stopped.
The latest rule bans a much broader range of synthetic drugs. It also includes language to cover "a compound that can be obtained from a parent compound as a result of a chemical reaction which replaced one atom/function group with a different one."
To read the complete text of the rule, visit http://www.healthvermont.gov/regs/documents/regulated_drugs_emergency_rule_122912.pdf <http://www.healthvermont.gov/regs/documents/regulated_drugs_emergency_rule_122912.pdf> .