Legislation in Olympia would place stringent restrictions on the sale of vaping products in Washington state. (File photo illustration)

Legislation in Olympia would place stringent restrictions on the sale of vaping products in Washington state. (File photo illustration)

Lawmakers aim to put sweeping regulations on vaping industry

Vape industry stakeholders, however, call it a win for Big Tobacco

OLYMPIA — Legislation requested by Gov. Jay Inslee’s office and supported by Democratic senators aims to ban flavored nicotine vaping products and impose sweeping regulations on the vaping industry.

If passed, Senate Bill 6254 would limit the nicotine concentration of vape products, ban certain flavoring chemicals and require vape manufacturers, distributors and retailers to obtain licenses from the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board. The bill would also give the board authority to inspect licensed facilities to ensure compliance.

The legislation is proposed in response to rising public health concerns over the widespread use of vape products as well as the growing number of teen users.

“While our nation has made a lot of progress in the last several decades in reducing teen smoking, what we have seen is an explosion in teen vaping,” said Sen. Patty Kuderer, D-Bellevue, one of the bill’s sponsors.

Kuderer cited federal Food and Drug Administration data when she spoke to the Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee on Jan. 22, which estimates an increase of more than 3 million teen vape users from 2017 to 2019.

“The evidence is clear: it is flavored vaping products that are the hook used to reel these young people in,” Kuderer said.

Another sponsor of the bill, Sen. Gerry Pollet, D-Seattle, testified in support of the proposed law. Pollet said a new generation of people are forming nicotine addictions from the vape products in a similar way to how cigarettes affected past generations.

People within the vape industry also testified to the Senate Health and Long-Term Care Committee. Margo Ross, the owner of a vapor product store in Moses Lake, claimed that minors were obtaining flavored vape products illegally and that banning these flavors would turn away customers who were using vapor products as a substitute for smoking cigarettes.

Sen. Ann Rivers, R-La Center, expressed concerns that the bill did not explicitly ban the online sale of flavored vapor products, claiming that e-commerce provides a method for minors to obtain these products.

Shaun D’Sylva, the owner of multiple vape stores and a nicotine e-liquid manufacturing company, said the regulations imposed by the legislation would effectively kill the vape and e-cigarette industry in the state.

“You’ve given the biggest gift you possibly could to Big Tobacco,” D’Sylva said.

The bill moves next to an executive session in the Senate Health and Long Term Care Committee, which is scheduled for a hearing Jan. 27.

More in News

26th District lawmakers tout sponsored bills in Olympia

Randall’s Medicaid extension bill passes Senate unanimously; House GOP calls for $30 car tabs

And the top-rated water source is …

Port Orchard City Council conducts own H 2 O taste test

Is Port Orchard ‘safe’? It depends on who you ask

National Council for Home Safety and Security says city ranks low in study; police chief has doubts

Dr. Berit Madsen, Dr. Faroush Abar, Dr. Jennie Crews, Poulsbo Mayor Becky Erickson, Miss Poulsbo Minako Todd and SCCA Vice President Aaron Crane pose for a photo during a ribbon cutting ceremony for the SCCA’s recently expanded clinic in Poulsbo. Ken Park / Kitsap News Group.
                                Dr. Berit Madsen, Dr. Faroush Abar, Dr. Jennie Crews, Poulsbo Mayor Becky Erickson, Miss Poulsbo Minako Todd and SCCA Vice President Aaron Crane pose for a photo during a ribbon cutting ceremony for the SCCA’s recently expanded clinic in Poulsbo. Ken Park / Kitsap News Group.
Seattle Cancer Care Alliance celebrates expansion of Poulsbo clinic

Seattle Cancer Care Alliance celebrated the expansion of its Poulsbo oncology clinic… Continue reading

Crash reported at SR 305 and Viking Avenue in Poulsbo

Emergency were called to a multiple vehicle collision at the intersection of… Continue reading

County approves annexation of 93 parcels of property for CKF&R

Senate Bill 5010 allows CKF&R to annex parcels within the fire district’s boundaries

‘Pipe bomb’ prompts residential evacuation in Poulsbo

A Department of Corrections visit to a Poulsbo home Monday evening resulted… Continue reading

Shelter in place warning lifted for Newberry Hill gas leak

CKF&R: gas leak occurred when an excavator struck a one-inch gas line

Bremerton WestSound Symphony gets family-friendly with ‘Fairy Tales & Legends’

Half-priced tickets are available for youth ages 18 and younger

Most Read