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From: Aaron Frazier
To: Rep. Perry, L.,
Subject: Please vote NO on HB112
Date: 2014-02-23T18:22:54Z
Hello Representatives,

It has been widely communicated that this bill is a “Youth Prevention” bill despite the fact existing laws already exist to accomplish this.  While we share in the concerns raised with youth access, this bill actually has nothing to do with youth control and will do nothing more than to keep the product out of the hands of legal adults throughout the state.  There are already laws associated with youth access and restricting the products from adults will have serious negative consequences on the health of Utah residents.  We feel that the sponsors actions, and those of the last 3 years, are demonstrative of an agenda against the industry with the intent of causing undue financial and reputation harm.

There are several points I would like to bring to your attention which has already been provided to the fiscal analyst and drafting attorney for inclusion into the bill:
  • The fiscal statement makes no accommodation for funding the necessary personnel to research and create the regulations, manage the licensing or for the county level health department inspections throughout the state.  Who will be paying for this attempted regulation? 
  • The fiscal statement estimates 100 licenses however at this current time, there are only around 40 retailers/manufacturers who will require a license.  
  • The fiscal statement makes no accommodation for the enforcement of violations via the state AG office.  Current estimates are at 2500 online retailers in the US and many thousands additional internationally.  How will the state fund the necessary enforcement to control the perceived problem?  Who will fund the education of all 2500 retailers of the new laws (if passed) to adequately educate them on the changed laws?
  • If this bill passes as it is written, Utah retailers, Utah manufacturers and other national manufacturers are planning legal action against the state based on constitutional violations thus the following constitutional amendments will need to be considered as part of this proposed bill:
    • Regulating the e-cigarette industry at the state/local level is considered a violation of the Tobacco Control Act - regulation is governed by the FDA exclusively and states/localities are not allowed to enhance it further.   Any attempt to regulate this, will be considered a violation of federal law of which legal briefs will be filed at the federal level.
    • Violation of the interstate commerce act due to the attempted online ban.  This product is legally allowed to be traded via the internet and is not currently federally regulated as a tobacco product.
    • Violation of  United States Constitution Article I, Section 8 of the copyright/trademark laws by forcing manufacturers to change their recipes and processes to follow Utah manufacturing regulations that are not currently enforced in any other industry. 

Rather than the current knee-jerk legislation, we ask that a special investigative committee be created that would be charged with formally reviewing the full body of research before passing any further legislation.  To date, all laws passed were done based on information from the Tobacco Control organizations and poorly executed health department studies that are not reviewing all available data on electronic cigarettes.  Other states are doing just this and finding that what has been reported to them as the motive for additional legislation is very different from the actual data. Based on this information, we request your support in voting NO on this bill when it is presented on the house floor in this new week.

Should you have any questions on this, please do not hesitate to reach out and contact me directly.

Kind regards,

Aaron Frazier
Director, Utah Vapers
Consumer Advocate, AEMSA
Salt Lake City, Utah
(801) 230-8159