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Measures Include Authority to Regulate Electronic Cigarettes in Same Manner as Tobacco

March 11, 2016
Just one week after the Assembly took action on March 4, the Senate on March 10 approved all six tobacco control bills, including measures that would regulate electronic cigarettes as tobacco products, increase the legal smoking age to 21 from 18, and authorize counties to impose local tobacco taxes.
 
The League of California Cities® has long supported the effort to regulate electronic cigarettes in the same manner as traditional tobacco products. Until now, there has been an absence of meaningful regulation at the state or federal level. Over 140 cities and counties in California have filled this void with local ordinances that subject electronic cigarettes to the same regulations as tobacco products. 
 
Lawmakers expressed strong feelings about imposing new restrictions on the sale and use of tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes. 
 
Senate President pro Tempore Kevin De León (D-Los Angeles) praised the bill pack as, “the most expansive tobacco control legislative package in over a decade.”
 
Sen. John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa) said, “Everybody has the right and the freedom to smoke.” 
 
Sen. Jeff Stone (R-Murietta), expressed concern that electronic cigarettes serve as a “gateway” to the use of traditional cigarettes. “For the first time, more teenagers use e-cigarettes than cigarettes.”
 
The six bill package is now headed to Gov. Jerry Brown for his signature. 


 
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