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Council to draft local policy for Psychoactive Substances

Media Release: Thursday 10 April

Council to draft local policy for Psychoactive Substances

Horowhenua District Council is to draft a policy to help minimise the impacts and any harm caused by 'legal highs'.

The Local Approved Products Policy for Psychoactive Substances will enable control over the location from which such products may be sold.

Council's Environmental Services Manager Tony Thomas says that in Horowhenua there is currently only one outlet selling these products.

Mr Thomas says that seeking a complete prohibition of legal highs is something that is beyond the Council’s jurisdiction.

"While councils are not legislatively required to develop Local Approved Products Policies, such policies would require any outlet of psychoactive substances to comply with rules."

Mr Thomas says that work done through the Social Sector Trial in Horowhenua indicates there is commitment from all but one retail shop owner to be ‘legal high free’.

Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) is currently providing input to discussions with central government to develop further tools that councils can use to control the sales of psychoactive substances.

LGNZ’s submission on the regulations advised that shops licensed to sell approved products should specialise in the sale of these substances and not be able to sell unrelated products, especially any that appeal to a youth market.

LGNZ would also like to see regulations introduced that specify both minimum and maximum amounts of an approved substance that might be purchased in a single sale and introducing an excise tax on approved products to reflect the cost to the health system and community of consumption of the psychoactive substances.

ENDS

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