Buzz kill: Florida senator takes aim at synthetic marijuana
Included in this front-page story in today's St. Petersburg Times about the rise of synthetic marijuana:
State Sen. Stephen Wise, R-Jacksonville, had not heard of K2 [a type of syntheic pot] as recently as July. "I didn't know if it was some kind of cream," he said. Now he's the main architect behind a bill that would ban the sale of synthetic marijuana. He hopes to introduce it in the next legislative session.
"If it has the same effect or worse effect than marijuana," Wise said, "I don't think (children) need to have access to it."
Like Wise, [Pinellas Park business owner Randy] Heine said that children should not have access to synthetic marijuana. In fact, a sign at his store says you must be 21 to buy. But he doesn't support an outright ban. Regulate fake pot, he said, but don't ban it.
"It's raising $15,000 in extra state sales tax a year," Heine said. "I'm just one store. Multiply this by this whole state. There are 5,000 stores or more that are doing $100,000 more in business a year because of this product and they're paying taxes, and you'll lose all of that."