Assemblyman Braunstein's Bath Salts Bill Signed Into Law

Assemblyman Edward C. Braunstein (D-Bayside) announced that Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signed into law his legislation that further curbs the use of bath salts by adding new compounds used to make these types of drugs to the state's banned substances list (A.717-A). The legislation classifies these compounds as Schedule I stimulant controlled substances and imposes criminal penalties on those who sell, use or possess these drugs. The bill also makes it a felony to sell the substances to a minor, or on school grounds.

In 2011, the state enacted a law authored by Assemblyman Braunstein that banned the sale or distribution of any product containing Mephedrone and MDPV, which were being marketed at the time for recreational use as bath salts, and classified these stimulants as controlled substances. “Bath salts” is a commonly-used term for man-made stimulant drugs that are similar to methamphetamines. These drugs can stimulate both the nervous system and the cardiac system and can cause heart attacks, seizures, permanent brain damage and severe hallucinations. An individual's behavior on bath salts can sometimes lead to suicide or the harm of others.

“We have seen too many examples and heard too many stories all over our state and around the country about these dangerous drugs that have devastating effects,” Assemblyman Braunstein said. “Since we passed the ban in 2011, we have seen an explosion of bath salts made from new compounds created by drug dealers to circumvent the current law.”

“During Labor Day weekend at the Electric Zoo music festival at Randall’s Island, several deaths were reportedly caused by use of drugs marketed as ‘Molly’, which actually contained bath salt compounds. These drugs are causing serious law enforcement, health, and mental health problems for families across New York State,” said Assemblyman Braunstein. “I introduced this legislation to respond to the concerns addressed to us by law enforcement and developed a bill that gives them the tools needed to end the widespread misuse of these drugs. I am proud that Governor Cuomo once again joined me in enacting legislation to protect New Yorkers from the scourge of bath salts.”

“By closing a significant loophole and toughening penalties to curb the sale of these drugs, we can prevent more deaths and further tragedy in communities across New York,” Governor Cuomo said.