South Australia To Ban Hydroponic Gardening Equipment

Hydroponic systems grow legal plants tooHydroponic systems grow legal plants tooThe Official announcement from Premier Rick Rann of the South Australia Government: In a second term of Government, we will make it an offence to have hydroponic equipment without a lawful excuse. New legislation will require hydroponic-equipment retailers to maintain a record of sales. Customers will also be required to provide identification.
The Omega Unit, a self-contained, high-tech hydroponic system, will be banned in South Australia. A number of these units have already been seized by police and are capable of producing four ?crops? a year with minimal effort and very high yields. Police powers will be extended to allow for inspection of known drug-dealing premises without a warrant, and the possession of a firearm will be made an aggravating feature of the drug offence, attracting a tougher penalty.

Hydroponically grown cannabis still remains a problem in South Australia. The Rann Government will create a specific offence of cultivating cannabis hydroponically. We will also make it an offence to have hydroponic equipment without lawful excuse. This will include equipment such as pumps, high-wattage electric lights and ballast boxes.

High-technology, self-contained, hydroponic cannabis-growing equipment such as the Omega Unit will be banned. Legislation also will be extended to require hydroponic-equipment retailers to maintain a record of sales of hydroponic equipment. Currently South Australia has legislation to record sales of precursor chemicals that can be used in the production of amphetamines. The extension of the law will make it easier for the police to prosecute drug crimes.

New legislation also will require customers to provide identification when purchasing hydroponic equipment. Growing cannabis hydroponically, being in possession of hydroponic equipment without lawful excuse, being in possession of an Omega Unit, failure to record hydroponic equipment sales or to require identification will carry a maximum penalty of one year imprisonment or a fine of $4000. Offenders will also forfeit the hydroponic equipment.

Significantly heavier penalties will apply for cultivation of larger numbers of plants or where it is cultivated for sale. For example, the cultivation of even a minimal number of plants for sale will attract a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and/or a fine of $50,000. The Rann Government will legislate to ensure that penalties for the manufacture, sale and distribution of amphetamines, ecstasy and similar drugs, will be increased to the maximum range available.

Signed,
Premier Rick Rann

Printed and authorised by D Feeney, 141 Gilles Street, Adelaide SA 5000

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