N.J. Gov. Murphy Signs Permanent Flavored Vapor Ban Into Law
TRENTON, N.J. — New Jersey retailers will need to remove flavored vapor products from their backbars within 90 days.
On Jan. 21, Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation imposing a permanent ban on the sale and distribution of flavored vapor products across the state. The new law, which goes into effect on April 20, includes menthol.
According to the governor's office, the state legislation approved the bill following the recommendation from the state Electric Smoking Device Task Force.
Murphy established the task force under Executive Order No. 84 in September. The panel was directed to formulate a comprehensive strategy to protect state residents from the hazards of electronic cigarettes, as Convenience Store News previously reported.
"As governor, I am first and foremost charged with protecting the health and safety of our people," Murphy said. "Research shows that flavored electronic smoking devices and products, such as mint, candy, fruit, and chocolate, are extremely appealing, especially to children. I commend my partners in the legislature for reacting swiftly to the task force's recommendations to pass legislation that will protect both youth and adults from the hazards of flavored electronic smoking device use."
Primary sponsors of the legislation include Senators Shirley Turner (D-15th), Richard Codey (D-27th) and Joseph Vitale (D-19th), and Assemblymembers Herb Conaway Jr. (D-7th), Carol Murphy (D-7th) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-37th).
"Our state cannot and will not ignore the widespread use of these harmful nicotine products among adolescents," Conaway said. "Flavored products are designed to attract young people, which is one of the reasons why most traditional cigarette flavors were banned a decade ago. Getting flavored vaping products off the market will protect our youth. If we don't, we will have another generation of young people addicted to nicotine when we were so close to reducing widespread dependency on this chemical."
According to Patch.com, Murphy vetoed legislation that would have strengthened regulations of vape shops, capped the nicotine content in vaping liquids and prohibited the sale of all tobacco products, including vape products, in pharmacies and retail facilities with on-site pharmacies.
The legislation would have also established a tracking system for vaping products, and increased the penalties for retailers caught selling tobacco and vaping products to anyone under age 21.