state call to actioN
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Louisiana – Stop a Flavor Ban (HB 179)!
- 06.08.23 – Legislature Adjourned without passing.
- 06.06.23 – Reported without Legislative Bureau amendments. Read by title and passed to third reading and final passage.
- 05.31.23 – Hearing: S. Committee on Health and Welfare, 10:00 AM, John J. Hainkel, Jr. Room. (Reported with amendments which remove the exemption for mint and menthol vapor products.)
- 05.18.23 – Received in the Senate. Read first time by title and placed on the Calendar for a second reading.
- 05.17.23 – Read third time by title, amended, roll called on final passage, yeas 64, nays 37. Finally passed, title adopted, ordered to the Senate.
- 05.09.23 – Scheduled for Floor Debate in the House, 05.17.23.
- 05.01.23 – Engrossed, ordered to 3rd reading in the House
- 04.27.23 – Reported favorably (7-3) from Judiciary
- 04.10.23 – Referred to Committee on Judiciary
- 03.24.23 – Introduction (Click here for Bill Page)
[Update] HB 179 did not recieve a final vote in the Senate prior to the end of the session on June 8. We are concluding this Call to Action as successful, but encourage Louisiana advocates to remain vigilant as we are likely to see this proposal be introduced again.
Thank you for participating!
HB 179 would ban the sale of vapor products in flavors other than tobacco. This bill has been amended (as of 05.17.23) to include an exemption for products that are authorized by FDA’s overly burdensome PMTA requirement. Moreover, the proposed flavor ban would effectively make the state of Louisiana an enforcement arm of the FDA without the requirement of thorough scientific review prior to taking action against manufacturers, retailers, and consumers.
HB 179 was passed to a third reading and final passage on June 6, but did not receive a vote prior to adjournment on June 8. For the time being, HB 179 is dead.
- Urge your lawmakers to oppose the flavor ban bill (HB 179) which would restrict your ability to use low-risk alternatives to smoking and send people back to smoking or to buy their vapor products from informal sources. (Mention how important you think it is that people have legal access to responsible retailers and how this bill would destroy many small businesses in Louisiana).
- HB 179 would effectively make Louisiana an enforcement arm of the FDA’s flawed, overly burdensom PMTA requirement which ultimately protects sales of undesireable vapor products and cigarettes. Make no mistake, this bill is being promoted by incumbent cigarette makers and PMTA grantees.
- Briefly, share your story about switching to vaping and what role that flavors play in helping you live smoke free.
- Note any health changes you’ve experienced.
- Briefly, discuss what losing access to a local supply of vapor products will mean for you (Will you shop out-of-state, in neighboring cities, or online? Will you make your own e-liquid at home or purchase products on an underground market?).
- Be brief, Be kind, and Say Thank You 🙂
For those new to vaping or just generally unfamiliar with federal regulations, the premarket tobacco application (or PMTA) deadline was September 9, 2020. This application is required to keep or bring new tobacco/nicotine products on the market. It is estimated that 95% to 98% of vapor manufacturers are effectively priced out of the authorization process.
But 98% is not 100% (as the antis are fond of saying).
The FDA has already approved some new tobacco products that are being sold in flavors other than tobacco (specifically mint, menthol, and wintergreen). In the weeks prior to the September deadline, the FDA accepted for review several applications for bottled e-liquid in flavors ranging from tobacco to cereal to fruit. Despite the rhetoric from certain members of congress and the incessant pro-drug war drum beat of tobacco prohibitionists, FDA is still capable of authorizing flavored smoke-free nicotine products for market. Moreover, FDA may even allow manufactures of these products to market them as safer than cigarettes, if they apply for and receive a modified risk order.
Louisiana’s flavor ban would undermine any decision by the FDA allowing low-risk, flavored tobacco products on the market after having met the “appropriate for the protection of public health” standard. Even without involving the FDA, flavor bans are being enacted without thorough consideration of the negative consequences. Sales data from Massachusetts and New York suggest that many people who were vaping prior to the flavor bans simply returned to smoking.
While a flavor ban may amount to an inconvenience for teens experimenting with substance use, it is actively harming parents and other adults who are trying to quit smoking.
keep the conversation going
No matter what the occasion, it is always appropriate to share you expereince and concerns with lawmakers. Advocates are encouraged to find their lawmakers using the Legislator Lookup tool and continue sharing how safer, smoke-free alternatives to combustible tobacco are improving their lives.
Thank you for standing up for Tobacco Harm Reduction!