City Council passes e-cigarette ordinance

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – E-Cigarettes come in flavors like bubble gum and strawberry cheesecake, but health officials worry because E-Cigarettes contain nicotine and they are potentially addictive, especially for young people. 

According to the CDC, the percentage of middle and high school students in this country who used electronic doubled from 2011 to 2012.

City Council members hope today’s unanimous vote will make it harder for these kids to graduate to regular cigarettes.

Joe Boardman went from smoking a pack a cigarettes a day before making the switch to e-cigarettes or vaping.

“My breathing was terrible for breathing tests. Since I quit cigarettes, it’s has gotten better, better, and better,” he said.

Where Boardman can vape will soon change.

The city council unanimously approved an ordinance that regulates the use and sale of e-Cigarettes.

Only those over the age of 18 can buy and vape. Users can only do it where cigarette smoking is allowed.

That means no parks, no beaches, and no movie theaters.

The new measure was crafted by fifth District Councilman Mark Kersey in order to protect kids.

“We spent so many years convincing kids that smoking is bad, and now we have a product that’s basically telling them it’s ok, that nicotine’s fine,” said Kersey.

There is small amount of nicotine and other additives, including flavorings in the e-liquid, but what comes out in the second hand smoke?

It is unclear because the devices are not regulated, and the level of nicotine and toxins vary in what vapors call ‘juice”.

Employees at the PB Vape Shoppe and Lounge say they do not sell to anyone under 18 years of age, and they do not think the new regulations will hurt business. PB Vape Shoppe and Lounge and businesses like them will have to have permit.

“If they are just a vape shop they will have to have a permit very similar to a tobacco license, and gives us knowledge of who is selling what,” said Kersey.

Other smoke shop owners told KUSI News they will need three permits to be able to sell tobacco.

A permit from the state, one from the city, and one from the police department. The cost? About $400.

The new ordinance is now on the mayor’s desk, and according to a rep, he is expected to sign it into law in the next few days.

Categories: KUSI