Tobacco 21 Bill Hearing Scheduled April 7th Take Action Now To Support!

Jefferson City–April 7, 2021 Noon in hearing room 5

A hearing is scheduled at noon on HB517 for Wednesday, April 7th, (hearing room 5) in the Missouri House of Representatives “Committee on Downsizing State Government,” chaired By Representative Ben Baker.

Missouri Smoke Free urges our supporters to either attend in person to provide oral testimony or to fill out written testimony in support. To submit written testimony click here and select “Downsizing State Government” under the hearing tab.

House Bill 517 was introduced by Representative Dan Shaul, it will raise the age of tobacco and vapor products to 21, while also limiting actions that local government can take. The State of Missouri will retain the right to restrict or tax tobacco and nicotine containing products. You can read our Op-Ed that was recently published in The Missouri Times here.

Given that President Trump signed “Tobacco 21” into Federal law before leaving office, and there is currently a patchwork of law in the state of Missouri that confuses retailers, the House of Representatives should pass HB 517 out of committee and bring to the floor for a full vote. This legislation is common sense, and when passed into state statute, it will secure federal funding dollars.

Kansas City Smoke Free Coalition Opposes Flavor Ban, Sends Letter To Committee

Updated 12-16-2021

Health committee fails to move a flavored tobacco and vapor ban out of committee. The measure fails 4-2.

Missouri Smoke Free joins with Kansas City Smoke Free Coalition to oppose a flavor ban on all tobacco and vapor products.  On behalf of the coalition, Missouri Smoke Free submitted a letter of opposition and recommendation today,  you may read it below.

In addition, a hearing is scheduled for the morning of Tuesday November 10th. No public comment will be accepted, so we urge our membership and allies to call the committee members below today.  Please leave a polite message.  If you are a consumer that has quit smoking with a tobacco harm reduction product, please kindly let them know which product and flavor you have used to quit.

November 9, 2020

To: Kansas City Finance, Governance and Public Safety Committee
From: Kansas City Smoke Free Coalition
Re: Ordinance #200937 Prohibition on Flavored Nicotine and Tobacco
Cc:  Mayor Quinton Lucas and Kansas City Council Members
The Kansas City Smoke Free Coalition, comprised of the below organizations, strongly opposes a ban on flavored vapor products, smoke free tobacco, and nicotine alternatives.

 

  1. Missouri Smoke Free Alliance: a trade organization
  2. BRAVE advocates: a consumer group
  3. Missouri Smoke Free: an education and advocacy organization
  4. Kansas City retail store members

 The Kansas City Council should reject any attempt to remove flavors from smoke free vapor and nicotine alternative products. Numerous studies and health organizations have come to the conclusion that smoke free alternatives are orders of magnitude safer than continuing to smoke. Furthermore, The FDA has stated publicly and argued in federal court that mass removal of flavored vapor products risks sending millions of people back to smoking. The proposed flavor ban is the exact opposite of current FDA action and despite the claim that this law is intended to protect young people, it will only result in fewer adults quitting smoking and will serve to create a vibrant black market that doesn’t require identification. Kansas City Smoke Free Coalition has analyzed data for retailer compliance and so far this year retailers complied with minor sales ban laws at a rate of 95%.  We have attached data for years 2016-2020.

Given the low risks of vapor products and smoke free alternatives, there is no reason for the city to do anything to make vapor products less accessible, affordable, or attractive to adult consumers who are choosing to use a safer alternative to smoking. Make no mistake, this proposal doesn’t serve the interest of public health and should be rejected.  Should the committee move forward we request that all stakeholders are brought to the table, including both industry and consumer representatives.

Sincerely,

Aaron Todd                                                                  Ryan Metzger
VAPOR WORLD                                                         Vapur
1148 w 103rd                                                               8105 N Oak Trafficway
KANSAS CITY, MO                                                    Kansas City, MO 64118

Wayne Bush                                                                John Huck
Vapor Lab                                                                     Missouri Smoke Free Alliance
7801 N Oak Trafficway
Kansas City, Mo                                                          Adam Moll,  Missouri Smoke Free

Shannon Brown
Bistate Regional Advocates for Vaping Education