The Ohio Senate passed its version of the two-year state operating budget, House Bill 110. In Governor Mike DeWine’s budget proposal, he wants to expand the statewide indoor smoking ban to include vaping. James Jarvis, president of the Ohio Vapor Technology Association (OHVTA) said the organization did not oppose this measure. Both the House and the Senate retained the language. The Senate, however, included an amendment to provide and exemption to stand-alone vapor stores from the indoor ban.
“This exemption is about consumer education and safety. The devices that stand-alone stores sell are technical pieces of electronics and if not used properly can cause harm,” said Jarvis. “Our store owners pride themselves on providing customers a full wealth of knowledge on how to not only use the device, but also change our important components of the device. This exemption allows our store owners to continue this education to properly advise consumers on how to use their device, whether with or without nicotine, in the store.”
The exemption only applies to stores who’s gross receipts are from sales of 80 percent or more of electronic smoking devices and accessories as currently defined in Ohio Law. The rule would not apply to convenience, grocery or other multi product stores.
The bill now moves on to a Conference Committee where the House and Senate will find common ground before sending it to Dewine’s desk for final approval.