Earlier today, the Colorado Senate Appropriations Committee overwhelmingly rejected HB 1064, an attempt to prohibit flavors in all nicotine products including reduced-harm alternatives like e-cigarettes. Americans for Tax Reform would like to commend the bipartisan opposition of committee members who voted against this deeply misguided bill.
Tim Andrews, ATR’s Director of Consumer Affairs said, “This courageous and sensible decision will continue to allow for more than 100,000 lives in Colorado to be saved by switching to vaping, extrapolating from modeling by Georgetown University Medical Center. For Colorado business owners, still dealing with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, a ban on flavored tobacco and vaping devices could have cost them their livelihoods. Colorado workers would have been hurt too, as the loss of revenue for business would have killed thousands of well-paying jobs. We are thrilled that adult access to lifesaving vaping products, shown to be 95% less harmful than traditional cigarettes, will not be unfairly restricted in the state.”
Andrews also commended committee members for “recognizing that banning flavored vaping products is scientifically shown to increase youth cigarette consumption, like in San Francisco where youth smoking more than doubled after the city imposed a flavor ban in 2018. It should be a relief to us all that Colorado lawmakers ended a foolish attempt to replicate the failures of San Francisco, where a lower-than-average youth smoking rate skyrocketed because lawmakers refused to follow the science“.
Andrews continued, “It is admirable that the bipartisan Senate Appropriations Committee examined the evidence, that shows flavors are critical to help adult smokers make the lifesaving switch to vaping. Adults who use flavored vaping products are shown to be 43% more likely to quit smoking than an adult who uses unflavored products”.
The committee voted 5-2 against HB 1064. To the Senators who voted against this disastrous idea, Cooke, Rankin, Rodriguez, Sonnenberg, and Zenzinger, Americans for Tax Reform and all who support a healthier Colorado, thank you.
The full written testimony can be found here.