January 7th, 2016
Florida’s 60-day Legislative Session begins next Tuesday January 12th. Yesterday Rep. Shawn Harrison filed HB 1143 which would amend the definition of “Smoking” in Florida’s existing Clean Indoor Air Act to include “inhaling, exhaling, carrying, or possessing a nicotine dispensing device”.
Rep. Harrison, an attorney in Tampa elected to the House in 2014, had not previously spoken publicly on this topic and had not signaled his intention to file such a bill. Partnered with VISTA, our lobbying team is corresponding with him and his office to learn more of his intentions.
We will attempt to work with the Representative on these matters. We will point out that there is no “smoke” in vapor and affects the way vapor retailers do business. We will call on him and all members of the Legislature to proceed cautiously in this field and particularly only after considering all of the facts. Medical science indicates that vapor products are 95% less harmful to users than combustible tobacco, and the vapor emitted poses no threat to bystanders, unlike toxic second hand smoke.
The Florida Smoke Free Association (FSFA) will keep you informed as we move forward over the coming days and weeks regarding this and other proposed legislation.
Link to the proposed bill: