Council to discuss “salts” ban

BLACKFOOT — The Blackfoot City Council plans to discuss a new synthetic drug called “bath salts” at tonight’s meeting at 7 p.m. at City Hall.
Councilman Chris Jensen said he plans to discuss a possible ban on the new drug, which is starting to be seen in Blackfoot.
The Idaho Legislature is seeking to ban “bath salts,” but Jensen said he would like to see a pre-emptive strike against the substance in Blackfoot. The House bill was introduced Feb. 8, but has been in the Judiciary, Rules and Administration Committee since. If passed, the ban would go into effect immediately.
“I’d rather catch it now—early—than wait,” Jensen said.
Lt. Paul Newbold, who leads the Blackfoot Police/Bingham County Sheriff Joint Detective Unit, said local police have encountered people using the substance, which causes hallucinations, extreme paranoia and suicidal delusions. It is highly addictive.
“We haven’t located it being sold in our area yet,” Newbold said. “But we know it’s here.”
Newbold said the substance is labeled as bath salts and comes in packages the size of a sugar packet. But what’s inside is far from actual bath salts. Newbold said they have yet to found any local retailers selling the drug.
“It’s not your Bed Bath and Beyond bath salts,” Newbold said. “It’s a designer drug.”
“Bath salts” are typically abused by snorting, smoking, injecting or consumption. Use of the drug causes effects similar to methamphetamine, ecstasy or cocaine.
In addition to discussing a potential ban on “bath salts,” the City Council will receive an update on the possibility of accepting credit card payments at City Hall.