from the Office of State Senator Craig Estes, District 30

For Immediate Release
April 26, 2007
Contact: Jody Withers
(512) 463-0130

Senate passes Estes' bill to restrict the sale of Salvia Divinorum

AUSTIN -- The Texas Senate passed Senate Bill 1796 by State Senator Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls) to restrict access by minors to the psychoactive drug Salvia Divinorum commonly available in tobacco shops or over the Internet.

"We are just now becoming aware of the recreational use of this drug. While we still have many questions about the long term affects, there is a consensus that any drug that alters the mind should not be available to minors," said Estes.

Senate Bill 1796 prohibits the sale or giving of Salvia Divinorum to anyone under the age of 18. Salvia Divinorum is a psychoactive plant that can be ingested by chewing the plants, or squeezing the leaves for juice, but is most commonly ingested by drying and smoking the leaves.

Websites promoting the use of Salvia Divinorum encourage the user to have a "sober sitter" to watch out for the user's safety while under the effects of the drug. The effects of the drug often leave the user temporarily incapacitated and unable to function without supervision.

"I can see no reason to allow a minor to have access to any substance that requires a 'sober sitter' to keep the user from hurting themselves or others," said Estes.

Senate Bill 1796 also requires the Senate to conduct an interim to further investigate the use of Salvia Divinorum and to recommend whether further regulation is warranted.

Senate Bill 1796 now goes to the Texas House for consideration.

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