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Cuomo’s 15th proposal for 2020: Stricter rules for vaping, crackdown on vape ads

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 15th proposal of the State of the State Agenda includes a crackdown on flavored nicotine vaping products.

The legislation would also authorize the State Department of Health to regulate the sale of chemicals used in vaping-related products and ban the sale of vaping product carrier oils deemed to be a public health risk. Finally, the legislation would prohibit the online, phone and mail order sale of e-cigarettes; only registered retailers would be allowed to purchase e-cigarettes using those methods.

“Vaping is a public health crisis, claiming too many lives and making countless others sick in a short period of time,” Governor Cuomo said. “The problem is made worse by unscrupulous vaping companies who are targeting young people with candy flavored products like Cotton Candy and Bubble-gum and other marketing ploys. While the federal administration continues its empty rhetoric on an issue impacting more than a quarter of all high school students, in New York we’re using every tool at our disposal to keep help children safe and stop them from forming an unhealthy and potentially deadly lifelong addiction.”

Ban the Sale of Flavored Nicotine Vaping Products

The Governor will introduce legislation banning the sale of all flavored nicotine vaping products, including menthol — an extension of the State’songoing efforts to reduce youth use of both tobacco and vaping products. Nearly 40 percent of 12th grade students and 27 percent of all high school students are now using e-cigarettes, with this increase largely driven by flavored e-liquids used in vaping devices.

Photo by Sarah Johnson

Restrict Vaping Ads Targeted to Youth

In addition to restricting the sale of flavors that appeal to kids, the Governor’s legislation will ban all vaping-related ads targeted to youth, including those in more traditional forms of advertising such as newspapers and magazines, as well as in digital formats in periodicals, social media and on websites with significant youth viewership. Advertisers will also not be allowed to make vaping product safety claims or pitch vaping products as smoking cessation options without FDA-approval.

Ban Harmful Unregulated Carrier Oils

Following the alarming number of hospitalizations and deaths involving patients who had reported a history of using e-cigarettes or vaping products, Vitamin E acetate — which is sometimes used as an e-liquid diluent — has been identified as a chemical of concern. In order to quickly respond to the proliferation of these dangerous, untested and unregulated chemicals used in vaping related products, the Governor will also advance legislation to empower the Department of Health to ban the sale of vaping carrier oils that include chemicals or ingredients that when inhaled through a vaping device are deemed to be dangerous and a significant public health risk.

Limit Online Sale of Vaping Products

The current sale of e-liquids and e-cigarettes through online, phone and mail order allows underage youth to purchase products unlawfully and circumvent sales taxes. Therefore, the Governor will advance legislation restricting the online, phone and mail order sale of e-liquids and e-cigarettes only to licensed vaping product retailers. Only registered retailers would be allowed to purchase e-cigarettes using those methods. This restriction, which already applies to the sale of conventional tobacco products, will help stop the illegal sale of dangerous vaping products to underage purchasers.

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