The proposed legislation is being referred to the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs. “This bill proposes to prohibit anyone from selling electronic cigarettes, liquids containing nicotine or otherwise intended for use with an electronic cigarette, or tobacco paraphernalia in Vermont unless that person is a licensed wholesale dealer or purchased the items from a licensed wholesale dealer. It would also prohibit shipping these items to anyone in Vermont other than a licensed wholesale dealer or retailer,” reads the proposal.
Voice your opinion
The Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association (CASAA), has pointed out that no hearing date has been set, and is urging local vapers to get in touch with their state senator urging him to oppose this bill.
The association explains that while HB 26 is a well-intentioned response to recent exaggerated claims about teen vaping, lawmakers are failing to consider two important factors:
“1) Online access is not driving the reported spike in youth use of vapor products.
2) Banning online sales will deny access to many people who smoke and those who quit by switching to vaping.”
A counterproductive move
CASAA points out that since Vermont is a small rural state with very few vape shops, local vapers do not have access to specialty vapor retailers. This means that by banning online sales, this bill would only be protecting the sales of combustible cigarettes, by possibly driving former smokers back to purchasing cigarettes, as they will be more easily available than their safer alternatives.