• April 16, 2024

South Carolina Considers Banning Local Vape Laws

 South Carolina Considers Banning Local Vape Laws

Credit: michaklootwijk

Credit: michaklootwijk

South Carolina lawmakers are considering several proposals banning local governments from passing more regulations on vaping and other tobacco products.

The measures grandfathers in any local ordinances enacted before Dec. 31, 2020. It would also ban cities from creating their own tobacco licensing rules. 

Dozens of public health groups like the American Cancer Society oppose the bills, according to WLTX

The State’s Tobacco Tax brought in Nearly $30 million in 2022, according to the Office of Revenue and Fiscal Affairs. Supporters like Moe Raed, manager of Day and Night vape shop, say regulations are bad for business and should be uniform across the state.

Day and Night opened in Columbia two months ago. “Yeah we’ve been having good business lately,” said Raed, adding that more than half the store’s revenue comes from vape and e-cigarette sales. 

“People lately have been giving up tobacco since it’s more expensive,” said Raed. He believes his adult customers shouldn’t be restricted on what products they can buy. “I don’t let anyone under 21 through these doors,” he said. “A lot of smoke shops will close. And it will hurt a lot of business and a lot of people too.”

There are currently no cities in South Carolina looking to restrict tobacco sales. The bill does not affect local governments’ ability to regulate where tobacco businesses can locate.

An identical bill has been introduced over the past six years and has failed to pass.

South Carolina is one of 10 states that don’t license Tobacco sellers. A bill to do so last year got stuck in a subcommittee after facing opposition from convenience store owners.