Synthetic cathinones are often sold disguised as common bath salts, pictured in this public domain photo, and have been sold in convenience stores, smoke shops and similar businesses.
TAYLORVILLE — Gov. Bruce Rauner on Monday signed Senate Bill 210 to create the Bath Salts Prohibition Act aimed at curbing the growing number of people selling and consuming synthetic cathinones, popularly known as “bath salts.”
“Bath salts have been on the rise here in Illinois and are being sold under the disguise of normal products,” Rauner said. “This bill will help counteract the growing number of synthetic cathinones producers and help our communities, especially those in rural Illinois, combat this epidemic.”
Bath salts are chemically similar to amphetamines, cocaine and MDMA (ecstasy), and they produce effects such as paranoia, hallucinations, increased sociability, panic attacks and excited delirium. They are often sold disguised as common bath salts and have been sold in convenience stores, smoke shops and similar businesses. They are known to be addictive.
“This bill is a small step toward tackling what remains a devastating issue in our communities,” said Rep. Avery Bourne (R-Raymond), sponsor of the legislation. “These highly addictive synthetic drugs continue to wreak havoc on our communities and throughout the country. It is my hope that this new law will limit access and spark discussions on how we can continue to crack down on this epidemic.”
Senate Bill 210 states that a person may not sell, or offer for sale, any bath salts in a retail establishment in Illinois. It is a Class 3 felony if the law is violated, resulting in a potential fine not exceeding $150,000. In addition to any penalty that may be imposed for a violation, the unit of local government that issued a retailer’s license for the retail establishment who violated the law may revoke that retailer’s license.
Use of bath salts has been on the rise across the country for the last decade. Two variations of the drug were outlawed in the United States in 2012, but new chemical compounds have been introduced.
SB 210 goes into effect on Jan. 1.