LA County Board of Supervisors unanimously passes first vote to ban sale of flavored tobacco
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has unanimously passed the first vote for a proposed ordinance to ban flavored tobacco products, including menthol cigarettes and flavored vaping products.
The ordinance needs to come back to the board for a second reading, as early as next week, and would take effect 30 days after that second vote. Tobacco retailers would then have 180 days, under an amendment proposed by Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who introduced the measure, to obtain new licenses required under the ordinance and to clear their shelves of flavored tobacco products.
“We have a responsibility to care for them and make sure the environment is safe,” said Ridley-Thomas.
Ridley-Thomas said his ordinance will impose more regulation, enforcement and require merchants to obtain a county business license.
At the hearing, groups from both sides were in attendance. Those who oppose the ban say minors should not use tobacco products, but that adults should have the right to choose.
They also say that vaping is a great alternative for adult tobacco users who are trying to quit, and that these bans will just lead buyers to the unregulated black market.