CHICAGO — Since September 2019, at least nine states have taken significant steps to regulate flavored vaping products, ranging from executive orders banning flavors to restrictions on all menthol products at retail.
Soon after governors and health officials began announcing their plans, lawsuits seeking injunctions emerged. Those lawsuits had varying results. Tony Abboud, executive director of the Vapor Technology Association (VTA), Washington, said his organization has filed lawsuits in at least five states, with varying results.
“We built the association to defend all segments of the industry broadly,” Abboud said. “Its primary purpose is to maintain a diverse market of flavors and devices.”
Since last fall, some measures have fallen by the wayside, while others remain or are about to become law. Here’s a state-by-state update on regulations on flavored vaping ...
In September 2019, Massachusetts enacted a temporary ban on all vaping products. By November, Gov. Charlie Baker had signed legislation continuing that ban and including all menthol-flavored tobacco and vaping products. Lawsuits in that state led to a draw, allowing the initial regulations to stand. All flavored vaping products are currently banned, while retailers must pull menthol cigarettes by June 1, 2020.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo initiated an executive order in October 2019 to ban all flavored vaping products, excluding menthol. A lawsuit resulted in an injunction barring enactment of the new rule. In December, officials extended the ban for 90 days, but it remains inactive pending litigation.
In October 2019, Washington initiated a temporary flavor ban on all vaping products, excluding menthol. An attempt to block the new rule failed in the courts, allowing the ban to stand. In February, legislators allowed vaping products back onto the market but only to customers 21 or older, in accordance with the state’s new buying age law, according to the Seattle Times. The initial ban also expired in February.