Utah Lawmakers Want Control of Nicotine Limits

The a new bill in the U.S. state of Utah seeks to un-do some vaping restrictions in the state. S.B. 134 would raise the standard of 24 mg/ml to 65 mg/ml if passed. Senator Curtis Bramble, the lawmaker behind the bill, says that the current standard bars 70 to 80 percent of all vape products on the market.

Utah state house
Credit: Tyler Moore

“We’ve done everything prudent to limit access of these products to youth; the question is if these are legal products in the US, should it be by administrative rule that they are prohibited or should it by an affirmative vote of the legislature that we limit the market?” Senator Bramble asked during a senate committee.

Over the last few years, Utah’s state legislature has given the Utah Department of Health (UDH) the power to limit nicotine sales and quantities in Utah. Beginning in 2020, UDH set a standard of 24 mg/mL of nicotine in vaping products sold in the state.

Beyond raising the nicotine standards, the law would also strip UDH of the ability to create these kinds of limits. Opponents to S.B. 134 say the more limits to nicotine the better, no matter where those limits are coming from.

“We have a youth addiction problem with nicotine; we have 30,000 youth in Utah vaping. Why on earth would the legislature want to increase the amount of nicotine?” asked Walter Plumb, the president of Drug Safe Utah, said, according to a story on abc4.com.

The bill has passed in a Senate committee and is waiting for a vote by the full Senate.