UPDATE: 5:15 p.m. -- Gov. Rick Snyder signed the package of bills banning the sale of synthetic marijuana on Tuesday afternoon.
“K2, Spice and similar products are not safe for human consumption, and I applaud the Legislature’s efforts to remove these dangerous compounds from our communities and protect our youth,” Snyder said in a release.
After local protests and several tragedies linked to "synthetic marijuana," Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has announced he will sign into law a package of four bills that would ban K2, Spice and other synthetic drugs including "bath salts." The signing will take place Tuesday in Lansing.
The legislation would ban people from selling or carrying the substances effective July 1, according to the Detroit Free Press. More than 40 other states have enacted synthetic marijuana bans.
Under one of the bills that would go into effect immediately, the director of the Michigan Department of Community Health would also be able to ban any substance considered to be an immediate threat to public health after consulting with the Michigan Board of Pharmacy.
The drugs have been sold over the counter at gas stations as a blend of herbs sprayed with chemicals, and their accessibility have made them attractive to teens.
In the wake of several tragedies, including a Bloomfield Township teen's reported fatal overdose on synthetic marijuana and its alleged involvement in the case of Tucker Cipriano, who is charged with murdering his father, local outcry caused communities to enact their own bans and protest gas stations where the drugs were being sold. The Detroit News reports synthetic marijuana has led to 180 hospitalizations across the state up through last month.
On June 13, the Tri-County Business Community, a business organization with 4,000 members, pledged to uphold an June 5 emergency order by Detroit Mayor Dave Bing banning K2 and similar substances.
While the synthetic drug known as "bath salts," also included in the legislation, has received less direct criticism in the state, national attention has turned to its potential danger after last month's gruesome Florida face-eating attack by a man who is suspected to have ingested the drug.