Thursday, April 16, 2015

Call to Action: Submit comments on FDA’s Second Workshop Regarding E-Cigarettes.



FDA Call to Action: Submit comments on FDA’s Second Workshop Regarding E-Cigarettes.


  1. The first of three FDA Workshop was held in December 2014, and you have until July 2nd, 2015 to submit comments.  Please see: CASAA Call to Action for First FDA Workshop for details and instructions.


  1. This Call to Action includes instructions for commenting on the Second Workshop Regarding E-Cigarettes held March 9th-10th, 2015.


  1. The third and final workshop will be held in June, 2015 and we will issue a new call to action shortly after it concludes.

Washington, DC Call to Action: Oppose a 70% Tax on Vapor Products

DC Mayor Muriel Bowser has introduced the city’s budget for 2016.  The proposal includes the “Vapor Product Amendment Act of 2015” which would tax e-cigarettes at the same rate as other tobacco products which is an unjustifiable 70% of wholesale.

Please take action NOW by sending an email to city council members urging them to remove this harmful tax from the budget.



Please also make plans to attend this hearing*:

Council Chamber - Room 500

*Persons wishing to testify should email committee staff persons to ask that your name be added to the list.
  • Sarina Loy (sloy@dccouncil.us, 202-724-8058)
  • Brian McClure (bmcclure@dccouncil.us, 202-724-8112)

While a speaking position is not guaranteed, members of the public may be permitted to testify even if they do not sign up in advance.  (Even if you are not planning to testify, your presence is encouraged as it demonstrates the large number of people affected by and engaged in this issue.  As a sign of respect, please refrain from vaping in the capitol building.  Please also dress accordingly -- no sweatpants and t-shirts.)


(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.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Rhode Island: Oppose an Indoor Vaping Ban (SB 489) and misleading messaging (SB 482).

Senate Bill 482 would require all e-cigarette retailers in Rhode Island to post false and misleading signs warning consumers that vaping can cause cancer and lung disease.

Senate Bill 489 would prohibit the use of e-cigarettes in ANY indoor public space in Rhode Island, including vapor retail shops.

Please take action NOW by sending a message to your lawmakers urging them to oppose these bills

These bills are both scheduled for public hearings on THURSDAY, April 16th, 2015 in the Senate Health & Human Services Committee:

5:00 PM
Rhode Island State House - Senate Lounge, 3rd Floor

Please make plans to attend this hearing.  Even if you are not planning to testify, your presence is encouraged as it demonstrates the large number of people affected by and engaged in this issue.  As a sign of respect, please refrain from vaping in the capitol building.  Please also dress accordingly -- no sweatpants and t-shirts.


(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.

Minnesota Call to Action: Oppose SF 2025 that would enact a 30 cent per ml tax on vapor products

(Update - 04.15.15)

HF 2182 has been scheduled for an informal hearing on THURSDAY, April 16th at 10:15 AM in the House Taxes Committee.  Although public testimony will not be heard, Minnesota Vapers Advocacy invites you to join them for a rally at the capitol.  The gathering begins at 9:45 AM.  In the interim, please continue to send emails urging lawmakers to oppose this bill.

SF 2025 has been taken off of the schedule for tomorrow’s Senate Taxes Committee hearing.  However, this is not an indication that the bill is dead.  It is still quite possible that SF 2025 will be rescheduled at a later date.  Please continue to send emails urging lawmakers to oppose this bill.



Please take 3 minutes to send two fully editable emails urging your lawmakers to oppose these bills.



(Update - 04.10.15)

Minnesota Vapers Advocacy (MNVA) has issued a Call to Action for SF 2025 and HF 2182, and we are encouraging Minnesota tobacco harm reduction advocates to participate in that Call to Action as well. Up-to-date information about legislative issues affecting Minnesota vapers can be found at MNVA's Facebook page as well as on their website.

The Senate Taxes Committee has scheduled SF 2025 for a hearing. The committee will meet beginning at 8:30AM on Wednesday, April 15th at the State Capitol, Room 15. If you are able to attend this hearing to oppose the massive tax increase on e-liquid, please do so.

(Original Post - 04.09.15)


SF 2025 and HF 2182 would significantly raise taxes on all e-liquid consumers in Minnesota by imposing a 30 cent per ml tax on e-cigarette liquid.  Imagine paying an extra $9 on your next 30 ml bottle of e-liquid. While Minnesota’s existing system of taxation for e-cigarettes is inappropriate, this taxation system will raise your costs and should be rejected.


SF 2025 has been referred to the Senate Taxes Committee and could be set for a hearing as early as next week. The Taxes Committee generally meets Monday through Friday at 8:30 AM in Saint Paul, so if you are able to attend, please be ready for an early morning.


Please take 3 minutes to send two fully editable emails urging your lawmakers to oppose these bills.



If you live in a district represented by someone on the committee, you will receive an additional alert prompting you to take action.  It is vitally important that you especially take action due to the fact that legislators consider the views of their constituents with greater weight.





(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.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Alaska Call to Action: Two bills have been introduced that threaten to ban vaping wherever smoking is banned!

(Update - 04.14.15)


Tomorrow, Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 at 8:30 a.m., there will be a hearing on SB 1 (which would ban e-cigarette use in public places and workplaces across the state).




This hearing will be via teleconference in the Senate State Affairs Committee, and the teleconference number that has been provided to us is 844-586-9085. You can contact your Legislative Information Office for details.


Your lawmakers need to hear from YOU, a taxpaying citizen of Alaska and a vaper. Please try to find the time to testify via teleconference.


Louisiana Call to Action: Take action to oppose 2 bills that would enact

House Bill 427 would enact a 5 cents per ml tax on e-liquid as well as double the wholesale tax on smokeless tobacco from 20% to 40%.  House Bill 252 would also tax e-liquid at 5 cents per ml but proposes a slightly lower wholesale tax on smokeless tobacco at 30%.  While this new tax on e-liquid may seem modest, the long history of “sin” taxes has shown that once a “small” tax is on the books, it becomes far easier for future legislatures to hike that tax.

Please take action now by sending a fully editable email to your lawmakers urging them to oppose this tax bill.


Currently, there are no hearings scheduled for these bills.  Louisiana residents should monitor hearing announcements from the House Ways & Means Committee for updates.



(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.

CASAA Podcast Update April 13, 2015

CASAA's Jan Johnson and Alex Clark discuss legislative- and advocacy-related matters of current interest to CASAA members and THR (tobacco harm reduction) advocates.


Monday, April 13, 2015

Riverbank, CA - Local Alert: Notice of Hearing, Tuesday, April 14th at 6:00PM - Ordinance that would allow for the establishment of vapor lounges -- some conditions apply.

Riverbank, CA


Ordinance No. 2015-009 would amend the city’s zoning code to allow for the establishment of new vapor lounges.  This is a significant development in that a moratorium on the establishment of new vapor lounges has been in effect since October 28th, 2014.  This measure (initially 45 days) was shortly followed by a ten-month extension on the moratorium.


This ordinance is scheduled for a hearing on TUESDAY, April 14th at 6:00 PM.


Riverbank City Hall Council Chamber
6707 Third Street
Riverbank, CA


There are, as one might expect, some caveats to this amendment:
  • Owners must apply for a conditional use permit from the city
  • Minimum Proximity requirements
    • 1000 ft from any Hookah or Vapor Lounge
    • 500 ft from any residential parcel of land
    • 600 ft from  “a. Religious facility; b. Courthouse; c. Day nursery; d. Public playground/park/recreation area; e. School; f. Vocational or professional institution; or g. Institution of higher education, including community or junior college, college, or university.”


For comparison, the only proximity restriction for a retail establishment that sells traditional cigarettes is that it is 500 ft from a school or playground.


At this time, given the unfair restrictions in this ordinance we are unable to recommend support. However, we certainly recognize that allowing for the establishment of “vapor lounges” in the city of Riverbank is a step in the right direction.


We would, instead, urge residents to attend the hearing* and offer information to the council so they can make a more informed decision moving forward.  Please also take a moment to make phone calls and send emails to council members.  We have provided some basic talking points and contact information below.

Delaware Call to Action: Oppose HB 5 which would prohibit vaping where smoking is currently banned.

(Update - 04.13.15)

HB 5 has passed out of committee. It is important that vapers continue to act as this bill could be heard in the Delaware House of Representatives as early as April 20th, 2015.


For those that have not participated in our call to action, please take a moment now to send an email and make a call to your representative and members of the committee.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

St. Croix Co., WI - Local Alert: Resolution 34 would define vaping as smoking and prohibit use on/in county owned property

St. Croix County, WI


Resolution No. 34 (see p. 55 of the linked agenda) would update the county tobacco-free policy  “smoking” to include the use of electronic cigarettes.  If adopted, this ordinance would treat vaping just like smoking and prohibit use in county-owned grounds with government buildings, county-owned parks, the fairgrounds, and all county-owned vehicles and equipment.


Please attend the next regular Health and Human Services Board Meeting, Tuesday, April 14, 2015, 5:30 p.m.*


County Board Room
1101 Carmichael Road
Hudson, Wisconsin


Please take a moment to make phone calls and send emails to members of the County Supervisors who serve on the Health and Human Services Board.  Contact information and talking points are provided below.