© 2023 WRVO Public Media
NPR News for Central New York
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

NY state announces new bans on synthetic marijuana

Ellen Abbott
WRVO News File Photo

The governor says vendors and producers of synthetic marijuana try to “skirt the law” by creating new chemicals that aren’t currently banned. The New York Department of Health announced Thursday emergency regulations broadening the ban on synthetic marijuana to try to keep up with drug makers.

The governor calls synthetic drugs “an alarming public health risk.”

That’s why the Public Health and Health Planning Council unanimously expanded the list of banned substances.

The state reports more than 2,000 emergency department visits and over 300 poison center calls were related to synthetic marijuana this summer. That’s 10 times as many as last year. New York City and central New York have particularly seen an uptick in synthetic marijuana use this summer.

Synthetic marijuana tries to mimic the effects of regular pot with the use of chemical compounds sometimes sprayed on plant materials.

Anyone in possession of these banned substances faces criminal and civil penalties, fines, and possible jail time.

You can read the full list of state regulations here.