State Lawmakers Hoping to Ban Synthetic Marijuana Statewide

ANNAPOLIS, MD- Synthetic marijuana has been banned in three Frederick County, Maryland municipalities, and now state lawmakers are springing into action hoping to make it illegal statewide. 

It started off in Thurmont, now legislators in the Maryland General Assembly are hoping to do the same. 

"It's a state-wide bill to ban the sale and possession of synthetic marijuana, synthetic cannabinoids, which is a marijuana-like product," says Del. Patrick Hogan, (R) - Frederick County. "But it's a lot more dangerous because it's laced with many different kinds of chemicals." 

"The bill would very strongly penalize anyone selling it up to a $25,000 fine and four years in jail," says Sen. Ron Young, (D) - Washington and Frederick Counties. 

Users convicted of having less than 10 grams of spice could get up to 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $500. Anything more than 10 grams could cost a user up to $1,000 and one year in jail. 

The bill got combined with several other synthetic marijuana bills inside the House Chamber. Lawmakers hope by working together, their efforts won't go up in smoke. 

"It's extremely dangerous. Some kids are having direct effects the first time they use this, and some are getting addictive tendencies towards it," says Del. Kelly Schulz, (R) - Frederick County. 

"This is going to pass, and I think it needs to. What we're trying to do is keep this stuff off the streets," says Del. Galen Clagett, (D) - Frederick County. 

The Frederick County Delegation is sponsoring a similar bill at the request of County Commissioners. It's an emergency bill and would go into effect after the governor signs it. 

To read the state bill, click here. To read the emergency Frederick County bill, click here.

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