Mass. Health Officials Vote To End Vape Ban

Vape Ban ends Meeting

(Madison Rogers/WBZ NewsRadio)

BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — State health officials voted Wednesday to end Gov. Charlie Baker’s ban on the sale of vaping products—while setting stricter regulations for the vapes returning to shelves.

There are two major components to the new rules, which are set to kick in on June 1.

First, flavored tobacco, including mint and menthol, cannot be sold or consumed outside of licensed smoking bars in the state. These bars are also required to put up signs that address the harmful effects of vaping.

In addition, the Massachusetts Public Health Council agreed to enforce the ban on flavored tobacco products passed last month.

Massachusetts Flavored Tobacco Ban: What Changes? - Thumbnail Image

Massachusetts Flavored Tobacco Ban: What Changes?

Second, vapes with more than 35 milligrams per milliliter of nicotine can only be sold at 21+ smoke shops.

There will also be a 75 percent excise tax put on all vaping products.

The Cannabis Control Commission's ban on marijuana vaping products that use oil, including medical pot, remained in effect until Thursday afternoon.

Department of Public Health Commissioner Monica Bharel said they're still considering the vaping crisis an emergency.

"This law and this regulation allow restricting access, especially to our youth, to make sure that they understand the dangers associated with these products," Bharel said.

View Mass DPH's Weekly Vape Illness Data Here

The continuing ban on marijuana vaping products remains a point of contention.

Jim Borghesani, the former communications director for the 2016 marijuana legalization campaign, said that the "lifting of the nicotine vape ban seems to be an acknowledgement by the state that legally-purchase vapes were not the sources of these illnesses in the first place."

"Given that the CDC has made a similar determination, it is clear that the ban on cannabis vape sales should also be lifted," Borghesani said. "Cannabis consumers and patients should not continue to be pushed toward the illicit products that appear to be causing the health problems."

A public hearing on the new regulations will be scheduled sometime in the next 90 days.

Click here for more information on the new tobacco law:

WBZ NewsRadio's Madison Rogers (@_madisonrogers) reports

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