Sunday, November 20, 2011

CASAA successfully stops e-cigarette use ban in Alameda, CA

As reported by CASAA's Call to Action from November 1st, the Alameda City Council was considering a comprehensive smoking ban; which included electronic cigarettes in the definition of "smoking." This would have prohibited the use of e-cigarettes everywhere smoking was not allowed - including condominiums, outdoor bar patios and beaches.

CASAA called for members to urge the City Council to remove e-cigarettes from the proposed ordinance and arranged for locals to make public comments at the Council's first reading. Due to these efforts and those of local e-cigarette merchants, e-cigarettes were removed from the ordinance until more information could be provided to the Council.

On November 15, Alameda City Council voted 5-0 to approve the new smokefree ordinance, with e-cigarettes excluded. The city prominently touts the removal of e-cigarettes from the proposed ordinance. [The City of Alameda - Secondhand Smoke Ordinance]

News story and minutes of the Nov. 15 council meeting may be read at [Big Night at Alameda City Council: Smoking Law Passes, City to Explore Alternatives to Cowan Land Swap - Alameda, CA Patch]

"Alameda City Council's decision to remove e-cigarettes is really important," CASAA Advisor Bill Godshall posted at, "as Alameda is within five miles of UCSF (where Stan Glantz is located); Berkeley (where Americans for Nonsmokers Rights is headquartered); ALA's regional office where lobbyist Serena Chen works; and the Public Health Law and Policy office in Oakland (which drafted model ordanances to ban e-cig use at Electronic Cigarettes: How They Are - and Could Be - Regulated | PHLP and"

"Hopefully, what happened in Alameda will make these e-cigarette prohibitionists reassess their strategy and tactics to inaccurately define "smoking" as including e-cigarette usage in future smokefree ordinance campaigns, and [discontinue making] f
alse claims about e-cigarettes," Godshall wrote.


Steve K said...

Hearing about these victories CASAA members are scoring one municipality at a time is kind of what keeps me going. The overall battle to keep e-cigarettes out of back alleys can be overwhelming sometimes, so it's the small victories that can keep the grassroots movement going. Good job members!

generalsn said...

E-cigs compete with Chantix, thereby undermining the entire purpose of smoking bans, the bottom line of Pfizer.

FishmanTx said...

"After a federal court ruled the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not have the authority to regulate e-cigarettes as drugs or drug delivery devices,1 in April 2011 the FDA announced plans to regulate e-cigarettes as a tobacco product under the Tobacco Control Act."
How can they regulate as a tobacco product, a non-tobacco product? It won't hold up in court. It does need legislation concerning prohibiting sales to minors, but that's about the extent of it.