Wednesday, January 6, 2016

CASAA Podcast Update January 4, 2016

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.

0:28 - Maine - Maine isn’t yet in session, but H 670 (carried over from last year) has already been scheduled for a hearing before the Joint Committee on Taxation on January 13, 2015. LD 973/HP 670 would impose an equivalency tax on e-cigarettes. If you live in Maine, it is important that you respond to the Call to Action here and, if at all possible, plan on attending the hearing.

2:57 - Kentucky - Legislative session begins 1-5-16, and we already have a bill that has been prefiled, HB 93, which would define e-cigarettes as tobacco products.

3:30 - By the end of the week, 14 states will be in legislative session.

5:40 - Chicago - Tax on vapor products in City of Chicago is now effective. (See here for more information.) Emanuel has alienated various constituencies, and several different groups are calling on Mayor Emanuel to resign, and #RahmResign and #VapingTruth are popular hashtags. If you use the #VapingTruth hashtag on Twitter, be sure to include some actual true content since the Chicago Department of Public Health is using that hashtag, and you can be certain they’re not including actual truth in their campaign.

7:04 - CASAA Survey - Data is now available!

7:49 - Iowa - Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller released a statement supporting a reasoned conversation about vapor products. CASAA appreciates AG Miller helping to set the record straight and fighting back against some of the misinformation. He notes that it is unfortunate that millions of smokers believe e-cigarettes to be just as harmful as smoking. (Note that Miller rather inexplicably still supports bans on indoor use of e-cigarettes, which is something we ask him to reconsider.) We have issued a Call to Action for Iowa residents to thank AG Miller and also for non-Iowa residents to send information to their attorneys general. (We also provide a letter for non-Iowa people to download, print, and snail mail to AG Miller to thank him.) Click here for links to the Call to Action.

This is an important Call to Action . . . we need to not only challenge bad actions, but also gratefully acknowledge positive ones. This is an opportunity to share and amplify an important message with other state attorneys general. (An email was sent to all CASAA members on this Call to Action. If you did not receive an email, please check your spam filter and/or update your information with CASAA--if you are already a member, filling out that form will simply update your existing information, not sign you up again.)

11:11 - New Jersey - New Jersey legislature has proposed a resolution to encourage the federal government to regulate e-cigarettes. If you live in New Jersey, please participate in the Call to Action here, asking your lawmakers to oppose this resolution as a very naive and damaging response to an extremely nuanced situation. This is an opportunity to engage in a dialogue and help educate your lawmakers as to why the FDA’s proposed regulations are a public health disaster.

15:11 - Tobacco 21 This is going to be a hot topic this year at the state level.

16:35 - Oregon - Indoor vaping prohibitions went into effect in the beginning of the year. Like New Jersey, no vaping where smoking is prohibited, and that means, among other things, no vaping in vape shops, not even to sample products.

As always:
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