Sweetwater commission considers banning sale of fake marijuana
The commission is expected to vote on the matter during its monthly meeting which begins at 8 p.m. at commission chambers, 500 SW 109th Ave.
Last month, Sweetwater police urged the commission to pass the ordinance to ban the sale of the incense -like substance not consider a tobacco product which can be sold to minors.
In the past, the fake marijuana has been available at gas stations and at one particular convenience store in the city.
Vice-Mayor Jose M. Diaz said the city wants to start a trend.
“We want to pioneer a law that makes this type of incense illegal because kids and young people like this odor,” he said last month. “If they inhale it, it is said that it is worse than marijuana.”
Fake weed has been linked to nausea and increased heart rates, but no official long-term studies have been conducted on its effects on humans.
The product looks like marijuana and is a leafy substance laced with different combinations of chemicals. According to the city, the chemicals have caused psychosis and heart attacks.
City spokeswoman Michelle Hammontree-Garcia said the detective bureau received a tip about unusual activity at a Quick Pik Store in the city and conducted a stake out.
“They found that children were coming from all over Miami-Dade to buy synthetic marijuana packaged as incense from this store,” she said.
Chemical compounds found in the product have already been banned by state and federal authorities.
However, the manufacturers of synthetic marijuana are finding loopholes by developing new chemical combinations that are not prohibited.
City attorney Ralph Ventura is expected to make recommendations on the ordinance.