Stanislaus County health officials lauded state legislation that went into effect Monday that requires sellers of electronic cigarettes, vaping devices and other related products to pay a $265 annual licensing fee.
Gov. Jerry Brown on May 4 signed into law state Senate Bill No. 5 and Assembly Bill No. 11, requiring that e-cigarettes be regulated the same as other tobacco products. The licensing fee is required for each location selling tobacco products.
The state laws echo a Riverbank city ordinance enacted in 2015 that requires tobacco retailers to obtain an annual license from the city. This license aims to prevent uncontrolled sales of tobacco and e-cigarette products and prohibits tobacco sales within 500 feet of any school or playground.
The new state laws ban the sale of e-cigarettes to anyone younger than 21, because many youths have had access to the products. The California Department of Public Health’s state health officer noted that e-cigarette use among people ages 18 to 29 tripled in 2014. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that more than a quarter of a million youths who had never smoked a cigarette used e-cigarettes in 2013.
In Modesto, Riverbank and Hughson, those cities have amended their definition of smoking to include e-cigarettes and other electronic nicotine devices, applying all smoking laws to those products.
The Department of Public Health reports that e-cigarette aerosol contains at least 10 chemicals on California’s list of chemicals known to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm.
According to the state Board of Equalization, products requiring licensing include:
▪ Any product containing, made or derived from nicotine
▪ Any electronic smoking or vaping device that delivers nicotine or other vaporized liquids to the person inhaling from the device
▪ Any component, part or accessory, even if it is sold separately
For more information on new state tobacco laws, visit tobaccofreeca.com.