House Representative

Coleman, Garnet F.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 04/26/2011

House Passes Bill Banning Synthetic Drugs Known as Bath Salts

Austin--The Texas House today approved HB 2118 by Reps. Garnet Coleman, Phil King, Helen Giddings, and Kenneth Sheets, which would ban the synthetic drugs known as "bath salts." Senator Leticia Van de Putte will pick up this bill in the Senate. HB 2118 adds the chemicals used to make the dangerous drugs to the Texas Controlled Substances Act. It also bans similar chemical compositions of the drugs to prevent manufacturers from bypassing the law by slightly modifying the formula. Rep. Coleman filed this legislation after a young Texas man killed himself after consuming the legal drug.

"I'm glad the House has acted swiftly to protect our children," said Rep. Coleman. "This drug is extremely dangerous. The side effects can be worse than those for consuming cocaine."

These drugs are currently sold legally at convenience stores, head shops, and over the Internet. Consumption can cause paranoia, hallucinations, and psychosis.

"Many kids who otherwise wouldn't use drugs are consuming bath salts because they're legal," said Rep. Coleman."We need to get this stuff off the shelves. I'm hopeful the Senate will quickly pass this bill.

Louisiana, North Dakota, and Florida have issued emergency bans of the substance.

Representative Coleman is available for comment.