Efforts to ban synthetic substances pick up

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The Calcasieu Parish Police Jury approved a resolution on Thursday supporting the City of Lake Charles' efforts to prohibit the sale of synthetic products that mimic illegal substances.

The passage of the resolution, which will be forwarded to the Southwest Louisiana Legislative Delegation, comes as a bill to permanently ban synthetic substances makes its way through the legislature.

House Bill 12, authored by Rep. Ricky Templet, R-Gretna, unanimously passed the House earlier this week. It's awaiting a hearing in the Senate judiciary committee. The bill would amend the original "K2" legislation and outlaw entire groups of ingredients and chemicals used to make synthetic substances.

Earlier this year, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal issued an executive order banning bath salts, one type of synthetic substance. The governor's order was only temporary, however.

Last year, the legislature passed a bill to ban another synthetic substance, known as "K2" or fake marijuana. However, lawmakers say manufacturers immediately started finding alternative ways  of making the substance.

Medical experts say synthetic substances cause hallucinations, paranoia and can lead to suicidal thoughts.

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