Tuesday, May 31, 2016

PA - Take action to oppose a 40 percent wholesale tax on vapor products.




A 40% wholesale tax on vapor products is most likely back on the table as Pennsylvania legislators return to Harrisburg on Monday, June 6th, to discuss the state’s budget.

It is vitally important that Pennsylvania residents take action this week by emailing and calling your lawmakers and urging them to oppose a tax on vapor products.

Take Action






(Writing Tip #1) If you have a lot to say, please craft your email in a separate word doc and then copy/paste it into the field provided.  If you take too long, they system will time out and you will lose your work.
(Writing Tip #2) Although we've provided a prewritten email with compelling talking points, we would strongly encourage you to edit the email because personalized communications to legislators are far more persuasive than form letters.  At a minimum, PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR PERSONAL STORY (just a few sentences) in the text of your email.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

IL - Call to Action! Take action to oppose Tobacco and Vapor 21 law.




Update - 05.24.16

SB 3011 is scheduled for a hearing on:

Thursday, May 26th, 2016
9:00 AM
Consumer Protection Committee Committee

Please take action NOW by filling out a “witness slip” to express opposition to this bill.

Instructions:
Section 1 (Identification):     Enter your information
Section 2 (Representation):     Not Applicable
Section 3 (Position):         Click “Opponent”
Section 4 (Testimony):     Check “Record of Appearance Only”


SB 3011, which would raise the minimum purchase age for ALL tobacco and vapor products from 18 to 21, is moving on to consideration in the Illinois Senate. This bill could be voted on as early as this week.


Please take action NOW by sending emails and making phone calls to your senator and urging them to oppose this bill.


Take action - Send a Message


Stop SB 3011 - Make A Call


You can read more about “Tobacco and Vapor 21” laws and CASAA’s position on this policy movement here.




(Writing Tip #1) If you have a lot to say, please craft your email in a separate word doc and then copy/paste it into the field provided.  If you take too long, they system will time out and you will lose your work.
(Writing Tip #2) Although we've provided a prewritten email with compelling talking points, we would strongly encourage you to edit the email because personalized communications to legislators are far more persuasive than form letters.  At a minimum, PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR PERSONAL STORY (just a few sentences) in the text of your email.

AK - Take action to oppose a new tax threat in special session.



HB 4001, which would enact a 75% wholesale tax on vapor products, has been scheduled for its first hearing in the House Finance Committee:

Tuesday, May 24th, 2016
8:30 AM
Bill Ray Center 208
(Teleconferenced)

Public testimony will be taken. However, a time limit may be set. This hearing will be via teleconference in the House Labor and Commerce Committee, and the teleconference number that has been provided to us is 844-586-9085. You can contact your Legislative Information Office for details.

Please make plans to attend this hearing either by phone or in person.

It is vital that Alaska vapers take action NOW to oppose these bills!

Take Action - Send an Email




(Writing Tip #1) If you have a lot to say, please craft your email in a separate word doc and then copy/paste it into the field provided.  If you take too long, they system will time out and you will lose your work.

(Writing Tip #2) Although we've provided a prewritten email with compelling talking points, we would strongly encourage you to edit the email because personalized communications to legislators are far more persuasive than form letters.  At a minimum, PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR PERSONAL STORY (just a few sentences) in the text of your email.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

FDA opportunities for action and update!

CASAA’s May 2016 Newsletter is coming soon, but, we wanted to make sure our members had some important information and engagement opportunities at their fingertips while we work out the finishing touches.

Here’s what you need to know for Thursday, May 19th, 2016:

A real petition that needs your participation:
Del. Larry Faircloth (R-WV) has proven himself as a valuable and effective advocate for vapor products in West Virginia. Now, in the wake of the FDA deeming regulations, he is taking his talent and legislative experience to lawmakers in D.C.

Please take action NOW by signing Del. Faircloth’s petition -- which will be hand delivered to specific lawmakers -- and support his effort to stand up to the FDA’s overreaching and disastrous regulations on vapor products.

Take Action - Sign the Petition

Survey - Centre for Substance Use Research
Last month, we alerted members to a survey produced by Dr. Christopher Russell, Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Substance Use Research. The information gathered will help present to regulators, academics, and medical professionals a more accurate picture about how people are using vapor products and contribute to the conversation about how vaping can benefit public health. Dr. Russell is still collecting data and hopes to make this the largest survey of its kind -- the more data the better!

Take Action - Complete the Survey

Change the predicate date for vapor products!
This week, CASAA updated our engagement in support of a change to the predicate date for products newly deemed to be tobacco by the FDA. We have made a slight adjustment to the letter we are asking members to send lawmakers to include support for both HR 2058 and the Cole-Bishop amendment. Please see our updated post here for more details. If you have not already taken action on this issue, please take a moment today to send a message to your lawmakers urging them to update the predicate date for vapor products.

Take Action - Send an Email

Update on the Deeming Regulations
Since the FDA deeming regulations were published for public inspection on May 5th, we’ve been reviewing multiple legislative and legal challenges to the rules. CASAA has joined with other groups in a coalition to explore all of these options as well as PR strategies. We are committed to combining our efforts to fight this battle on multiple fronts. This is an intensive process and, given the high stakes, we are thoroughly considering all viable pathways to challenging the FDA’s deeming regulations.

We are all aware of the desire for quick and decisive action in this matter. However, one hasty decision or poorly worded statement can create problems down the line. It is vital that any action is fully considered before being executed.  A well-crafted and focused effort has the best chance for success. It is time to act with purpose, not react emotionally.

Some Good News
On Wednesday, May 18th, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, sent a letter to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Robert Califf raising concerns about the agency’s recent e-cigarette regulation, which could create undue burdens on small businesses and lead to negative unintended health consequences. We will continue to update you as this effort progresses. You can view the letter here.

If you are on Twitter, please also take a moment to retweet Sen. Johnson’s message to the FDA. Feel free to ask the @US_FDA and @FDAtobacco to respond in your own words -- politely -- and use the hashtag #AnswerRonJohnson

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

US - Take action to change to the predicate date for vapor products newly deemed as tobacco by the FDA

Updated - 05.18.16


FDAdeeming_KeepDiversity.jpg


CASAA is urging our members to support
both HR 2058 and the Cole-Bishop amendment.
We have updated our engagement to reflect this support.


Take Action - Send a Message

Currently, there are two pieces of legislation in Congress that would effectively change the predicate date for products deemed to be tobacco by the FDA. In January, CASAA updated our Call to Action for HR 2058 and issued a separate Call to Action regarding the Cole-Bishop amendment in April. We have also provided an up-to-date list of co-sponsors with an opportunity for people living in those districts to send thank you letters.


Both HR 2058 and the Cole-Bishop amendment are vehicles for language that would change the predicate date in the Tobacco Control Act (TCA) from February 15th, 2007 to the effective date of the deeming regulations (August 8th, 2016). This change would allow for all vapor products currently on the market to remain on the market without being subject to the burdensome and prohibitive pre-market FDA approval application process. If Congress does not act to change the predicate date established by the TCA, the wide variety of vapor products that adult smokers have come to rely on to live smoke-free will be swept off the market.


The first Call to Action for Cole-Bishop specifically targeted members of the House Appropriations Committee, so it was limited to those CASAA members whose representatives were on the committee. The amendment was successfully added to the Agriculture Appropriations bill and will be moving to the floor of the House for a full vote soon. Shortly prior to this vote, we will need to rally support in order to prevent opponents from stripping the amendment out.


CASAA will be issuing a new, strategically-timed Call to Action to support the Cole-Bishop amendment before the appropriations bill comes to a vote in the House. At this time, we are urging our members to support both of these pieces of legislation. We have updated our message to lawmakers in this Call to Action to reflect this support.


Take Action - Send a Message


In order to clarify the similarities and differences of these two pieces of legislation, we have provided a table below that outlines the provisions of each. While we prefer HR 2058, our current analysis is that the Cole-Bishop Amendment has a greater likelihood of moving forward at present than does HR 2058, which is why we are urging consumers to support both. These two pieces of legislation are not mutually exclusive. Moreover, HR 2058 is useful as it provides both backup legislation, should the Cole-Bishop section be stripped from the appropriations bill before it gets to the President, and makes the predicate date change a permanent part of the law. CASAA is urging support of both at this time.
HR 2058:




HR 2058
Cole-Bishop Amendment
- Changes the predicate date in the Food, Drug, and Cosmetics Act for products deemed to be tobacco by the FDA from February 15th, 2007 to the effective date of the deeming regulations (August 8th, 2016).
- Prohibits funds appropriated to HHS for the FDA from being used to enforce the February 15th, 2007 predicate date. Instead, the enforceable predicate date becomes August 8th, 2016
and;

- Directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking (NRPM) within 12 months of the effective date of the deeming regulations August 8, 2017) to establish a product standard for vapor product batteries
and;

- Prohibits vapor product advertising in newspapers, magazines, periodicals, or other publications other than adult publications
and;

- Prohibits sales of vapor products through vending machines or displays that are not located in age restricted establishments where no one under the age of 18 is allowed to enter
and;

- Requires labeling of vapor products to include the phrases:
• "Keep Out of Reach of Children"
• "Underage Sale Prohibited"
• An accurate statement of the nicotine content of the vapor product
and;

- Requires all vapor retail establishments to register with the Secretary of HHS (see exceptions)



(Writing Tip #1) If you have a lot to say, please craft your email in a separate word doc and then copy/paste it into the field provided.  If you take too long, they system will time out and you will lose your work.


(Writing Tip #2) Although we've provided a prewritten email with compelling talking points, we would strongly encourage you to edit the email because personalized communications to legislators are far more persuasive than form letters.  At a minimum, PLEASE INCLUDE YOUR PERSONAL STORY (just a few sentences) in the text of your email.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

MN - The vapor tax is back and more threatening than ever! (HF 848)


The 30¢ per milliliter tax is back. Specifically, Article 7, Sections 5-13 are still in HF 848 and the bill has been assigned to the 2016 House Tax Conference Committee

If adopted, this amendment would:
  • Enact a 30¢ per milliliter tax on e-liquid
  • Include devices and hardware in the state’s definition of “tobacco products.”

Please take action NOW by sending a message to your lawmakers urging them to remove Article 7, Sections 5-13.

Oppose Vapor Taxes in MN - Send an Email

Please share this link on social media:

*Currently the tax on e-liquid in Minnesota is a 95% wholesale tax on nicotine. By altering the statute to tax the “consumable product” instead of just the nicotine contained in e-liquid, makes this is a huge increase.



(Writing Tip #1) If you have a lot to say, please craft your email in a separate word doc and then copy/paste it into the field provided.  If you take too long, they system will time out and you will lose your work.
(Writing Tip #2) Although we've provided a prewritten email with compelling talking points, we would strongly encourage you to edit the email because personalized communications to legislators are far more persuasive than form letters.  At a minimum, PLEASE INSERT YOUR PERSONAL STORY (just a few sentences) in the text of your email.