US city’s proposed smoke ban to include vape shops

A city in the U.S. state of Wisconsin wants to ban vaping in all workplaces, including vape shops. Alderwoman Cathy Spears, with the City of Appleton, introduced a resolution to modify language in the city’s smoke-free workplace ordinance to include vapor products.

The resolution also seeks to prohibit vapor use not only at workplaces, but also the shops that sell vapor products, according to a story in the Appleton Post-Crescent.

Numerous vape shop owners and employees are opposing the measure. Ken Kempen, co-owner of EVapor in Appleton, noting that the “ridiculous” measure from the “nanny city” will “hurt business,” said the measure is “going forward, so I would not anticipate that anybody can vape even in a vaping shop,” according to the article. 

If the Board of Health passes the resolution, it will move to the Common Council for consideration. Spears said numerous restaurant staff members, who have made “off the record” comments about their annoyance with co-workers who smoke and vape at the workplace, have not made their concerns public due to fear of retribution from their employees.

Derrick Brunette, manager of Good Nature EVAPOR, said vapor businesses, and not the government, should decide whether to allow customers to vape in their stores.

In a letter to the city council, George Packard of Neenah, who opened Xtreme Vape in Antigo, said if the measure is approved, he would suffer a 50 percent reduction in sales and lose customers to online retailers, according to the story.

Allowing customers to try different e-liquid flavors is responsible for “a huge part of our sales,” Packard said, adding that asking customers to go out to try a product, especially during winter, would be an unnecessary burden. Luke Nessina, an employee of Fox Valley Vapor, said the measure “would end up making more people mad, and it’s not going to help anything.”