Council unable to impose legal high drug ban

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There is a blanket call for all legal highs to be banned.
There is a blanket call for all legal highs to be banned.

A new Napier City Council Hearings Committee faces a barrage of opposition to legal highs but appears unable to heed a near blanket call for the substances to be banned.

The opposition is in more than 20 Psychoactive Substances Draft Policy submissions going before the committee on Wednesday.

It follows the council's lead in releasing the draft for consultation six weeks ago, with 16 submissions being received by the deadline last week and another eight going to next Wednesday's hearing as late submissions.

A large number are calling for a total ban on sales of the substances which have been produced under a number of names, but are often referred to generically as Kronic, K2 or synthetic cannabis.

A complete ban cannot, however, be implemented under the Psychoactive Substances Act which came into force on July 18, with a transitional licensing regime.

The council, with members expressing concern over the continuation of any sales, has proposed limiting sales to especially licensed businesses in the CBD, to ensure at least that sales do not continue in residential areas.

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