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2017 HB370 Call to Action

 

This is the second of two URGENT CALLS TO ACTION; this one for House Bill 370 introduced by Representative Bradley Last.


HB370 – Amendments to Tobacco Regulations

 

What this bill does:

  • Moves burdensome licensing requirements from the cities to the county health departments
  • Requires all retailers to obtain independent verification that you are zoned correctly at the business’ cost
  • No option to appeal decisions – county is judge, jury and executioner
  • Requires retailers to obtain tobacco licenses with no indication that the current e-cigarette sales license will not also be required
  • Defines vaping as smoking

What to do: HB370 has been assigned to the House Health & Human Services committee and will be heard in committee on Thursday February 23rd at 8:00 am in room 210 of the Senate building (building with cafeteria). This bill is first on the agenda so please arrive early if possible.

We are asking everyone to use the Vapor Technology Association (VTA) Call to Action portal to email then call the committee members before 5pm on Wednesday and ask them to OPPOSE this bill.

VTA Committee Engagement form (CTA): http://cqrcengage.com/vaportechnology/app/write-a-letter?6&engagementId=299773

See talking points below for details on what to say when you call or choose to directly email.

We are asking business owners to attend the hearing and present your best appearance possible. Remember, this is their house and we must respect the dress code and decorum to be respected as peers. Please do not attend wearing jeans, hoodies, or t-shirts. This environment is one of high respect and you should wear your best dress clothing. UTSFA President Tad Jensen will be running point on this hearing so please look for him when you arrive

Consumers, we do not feel it is necessary for you to attend the hearing as there are more critical bills still pending where your participation will have more impact. However please do call and email the legislators and request them to OPPOSE this bill.

Important: We can’t say this loud enough – Be courteous and respectful at all times in your emails and phone calls. This is always a very sensitive topic at the capitol and our community’s passion is always high and rightfully so. However there must be a balance between passion and facts without insulting the legislators. Believe it or not, most of the legislators are very tired of dealing with this topic every year so they will have little patience for outbursts, negativity, and insults; so always remain professional and respectful.


Talking Points:

  • Utah already requires that retailers of e-cigarettes obtain a special sales license to sell vapor products which authorizes the state to issue penalties and suspend licenses.
  • If the state feels that cities are not properly issuing licenses and enforcing zoning, penalizing the business for the ineptness of city departments is an abuse of Utah lawmaking. Would we require car owners to install speed limiters if the police were unable or unwilling to enforce speed laws?
  • Where lawmakers believe that retail operations are operating illegally, state law already authorizes the auditing of sales receipts to validate compliance with the laws. Forcing added regulations and licensing to close the gap on the cities inability to enforce the laws is not fair for small business.
  • Vaping is NOT smoking. Vapor products do not burn and are not tobacco products thus does not fit within the definition of ‘smoking’. Nicotine is no more a tobacco product than E-85 fuel is a vegetable.

Legislator Email Phone
Rep. Brad M. Daw (R)  bdaw@le.utah.gov (801) 850-3608
Rep. Mike Kennedy (R)  mikekennedy@le.utah.gov (801) 358-2362
Rep. Stewart E. Barlow (R)  sbarlow@le.utah.gov (801) 289-6699
Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck (D)  rchouck@le.utah.gov (801) 891-9292
Rep. Craig Hall (R)  chall@le.utah.gov (801) 573-1774
Rep. Sandra Hollins (D)  shollins@le.utah.gov (801) 538-1029
Rep. Kelly B. Miles (R)  kmiles@le.utah.gov (801) 538-1029
Rep. Paul Ray (R)  pray@le.utah.gov (801) 725-2719
Rep. Edward H. Redd (R)  eredd@le.utah.gov (435) 760-3177
Rep. Robert M. Spendlove (R)  rspendlove@le.utah.gov (801) 560-5394
Rep. Norman K. Thurston (R)  normonthurston64@gmail.com (801) 477-5348
Rep. Raymond Ward (R)  rayward@le.utah.gov (801) 440-8765

The legislative website no longer lists both office and mobile numbers so we are uncertain which, if any of these are mobile. We ask that you please send a text to the number in addition to calling and request their OPPOSITION of this bill. The text we recommend is: Please OPPOSE HB370 on Thursday and STOP the assault on the vapor industry.

You can also tweet to everyone using the above message with the hashtag #NoToHB370

  • Utah House Democrats: @utahhousedems
  • Utah House Republicans: @utahhousegop
  • Utah House of Representatives: @utahreps
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Hands For A Billion Lives Demonstration

On Saturday October 22nd at 2:22pm at the Utah State Capitol and in hundreds of locations world-wide at the exact same time in their time zone, communities joined hands in silent demonstration. Today, we joined hands as a visual demonstration of support for the 1 billion smokers who will die needlessly due to smoking-related disease if our government insists on overregulation and taxation thereby destroying the only hope of stopping over 480,000 deaths in the US.

A new award winning and Oscar nominated documentary “A Billion Lives” tells the history about collusion and corruption between our government, health agencies and big industry set to kill off the vaping industry and seal the fate of 1 billion smokers worldwide. This movie is premiering on November 3rd in Salt Lake City and the community is standing up for the truth that scientists around the world are saying can save lives.

We ask for everyone’s support of the public’s right to accurate and evidence based information on vapor products thereby allowing them to choose a safer alternative for themselves and their loved ones. Please see the short 3 minute video below of our demonstration on the capitol grounds.
Stories from our community:

 

From LM Fisher: Today, my husband Kevin Fisher & I participated in Hands for a Billion Lives here in Utah at the state capitol. We are glad that we went!

I wanted to remember and honor our dear friend Fiamma Palermo, who lost her battle to lung cancer in May this year, 2016. Although going through many months of chemo & radiation, the cancer in her lungs, from 55 years of smoking cigarettes prevailed. Fiamma (aka Karen Lee, aka Sweets) was a positive force in the vaping industry and a big advocate for it. Proof that vaping works, proof that smoking cigarettes kill, even though she had stopped smoking. Proof that vaping can help, as it added much valued time to her life, that was ultimately cut short from her years of smoking.

She cared for each and every one of us who vape, and specially cared to get cigarette smokers transitioned into vaping. Fiamma touched many many of our lives. May you rest in peace dear friend! We are always grateful the our paths crossed!

 

From Michael Gene:

Day 77, admission, and 3 part post.

I wish I could say that day 77 has left me 100% smoke free but it hasn’t. In the last 3 weeks I’ve smoked a total of 5 cigarettes, last one yesterday at work. 56 days straight and then I slipped a bit, but I didn’t fall flat on my face. And, that’s OK, I’ve never professed to be perfect, only human, and extremely motivated when I take on an endeavor of personal change. The only other one greater was changing me in order to give my kids the best life possible as a single father. So, in a way they are one in the same endeavor.

Say what you will about vaping, there’s plenty of jokes about it, but it’s not a fad for me. It’s been the tool that has kept my from lighting up 2305 times since I committed 77 days ago. It could have been 2310 times, but those 5 snuck in there. That’s a 0.21645% failure rate on my part. Or, better yet, a 99.78355% success rate in 77 days for a man that smoked for 31 years. Vaping as the best NRT for me, yeah it is working. You either support me or you don’t, if you don’t, well you don’t put the food on the table or the roof over my kids heads, I do.

Now, I recognize that I left two huge holes in my post so let me sew those up. It’s not a joke to me, it’s not funny, I’m adding potential years back on my life, so go be funny somewhere else if you’re gonna make a stupid joke in reply. And two, for anyone that is going to reply and say something about being addicted to nicotine, well, here’s food for thought. The nicotine I do intake vaping is much, much less harmful for me physically than the food we eat off of store shelves. And, tenfold less harmful than that fast food meal. So, to all the naysayers, educate yourself, and look at your personal habits before you comment, ever again about my vape posts.

To all the NRT vapers out there, this is to you.

Butson out….

 

From Kevin Fisher:

My wife LM Fisher and I spent part of our afternoon in a silent protest at our states capital in Salt Lake City UT to have access to a safer alternative to tobacco products!

The picture below is my Mom and Dad James and Nora Fisher. Both of my parents passed away from smoking related illnesses. It is no secret that I am a vaper and I am very proud to be so. My mom passed away in 2006 and my dad followed in 2008. Both had quick smoking 4 or 5 years before their passing. I honest believe that if they had the choice/freedom to choose a healthier alternative I might of had more time on this earth with them. My dad is retired military (USN) passed away from lung cancer, this was probably the most difficult thing to ever witness in my life…..I am smoke free thanks to vaping, I am almost nicotine free thanks to vaping.

I know if they were still with us today they would be very proud of the demon I have conquered.

fisher

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2nd showing of A Billion Lives

Thanks to the hard work by UTSFA member Riverwalk Vapors, Salt Lake City will have a 2nd showing for A Billion Lives.

The United Nations’ World Health Organization projects that a billion people will die this century from smoking. This award winning and Oscar contending documentary highlights the lies and corruption by top governments and health agencies around the world intent on allowing smokers to die all in the name of money.

Big brother has lied again…They’re trying to force an entire industry out of business that is helping people to stop smoking.    ~ Herman Cain

The truth about the corruption will be aired at 10pm on Thursday November 10th at Brewvies Cinema Pub in Salt Lake City. Smoking related disease kills Utah smokers at a rate of nearly 5 times that of the opioid epidemic and our state is not doing enough to fix the problem.

“The makers of this film did their due diligence, the narrative of this movie is immaculate.”     ~Kevin Crowley

Tickets are $13 each (with an add’l $1 processing fee) and must be purchased online via: https://www.tugg.com/events/a-billion-lives-bukd. The ticket fees cover the cost of the theater rental, fees for distribution (Tugg), production company costs and a percentage of the ticket sales are returned to the Utah Smoke Free Association to support statewide advocacy.

We encourage everyone in the community to reach out directly to their elected representatives to alert them to this premier and suggest they make the time to view it. The UTSFA is happy to provide tickets to them at no cost to them or the taxpayers but they will need to request it directly from us.

We have created a Facebook event to help show support and provide a location for people to discuss the event https://www.facebook.com/events/1365334500152088/

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Hands for A Billion Lives

handsThe Utah vaping family is invited to participate in a one of a kind GLOBAL call to action. We are asking for EVERY vaper in Utah to join together at the Utah State Capitol (South steps) on Saturday October 22nd at exactly 2:22 pm (need to be early so you can be in place by this time). At this exact time, vapers from around the world will be joining hands in solidarity to support the estimated 1 billion lives that will be lost this century due to smoking related disease. This event is not sponsored by any single industry organization to demonstrate the power we have as a community to come together to help save lives.

 

This movement is about exposing the threat to a billion lives from over-regulation of the vapor products, which will shut down 99% of the vapor industry and deny access to these products to Americans who would otherwise smoke. Today, We are building a wall to protect those billion lives who will die needlessly due to smoking-related disease if our government refuses to allow these products to remain on the market.

 

This will be a silent protest about exposing the threat to a billion lives from over-regulation of the vapor products, which will shut down 99% of the vapor industry and deny access to these products to Americans who would otherwise smoke.
On this day, we are building a wall to protect those billion lives who will die needlessly due to smoking-related disease if our government refuses to allow these products to remain on the market.

 

Some rules for the event that we ask everyone to please follow:

  1. This is a peaceful SILENT movement. No outburst, chanting, rallying. We can’t deliver the message that we are forming a wall to protect a billion lives and look positive and caring if we are ranting and raving about how the FDA sucks.
  2. Every person is responsible for their neighbor. Each of you are in charge of your neighbor and their actions. If your neighbor starts to act out, take action to help stop their behavior. Guilt works amazingly. “Hey, it is your responsibility to represent the community and you are making us look as irresponsible as they think we are. Stop. Show them we don’t want people to die, not that you want to kill someone.”
  3. Everyone is to direct media inquires to Shilo Platts, co-President of SFATA Utah. We want to deliver the exact same message across the country so it’s important that he be the ONLY media contact for this event.
  4. For this brief period it is imperative that we are not blowing clouds, doing vape tricks, etc. Remember why we all got into vaping and what the industry stands for (hint: it’s NOT clouds brah).

 

If you are a store owner, please print this flyer and place it on the tasting bar, next to your register and on your doors. Make sure your employees talk to all your customers about it. If you are a consumer, we encourage you to bring your significant others or family members with you that are old enough to understand what our industry is all about. Lastly, we are asking anyone who has lost a friend or family member as a consequence of tobacco-related illness to bring a picture of that individual with them to the protest.

 

To join the event, please register your interest on the Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1346568058710382/

 

For more information on the Hands for A Billion Lives global event, please visit http://www.handsforabillionlives.com/

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A Billion Lives SLC

Thanks to the hard work by UTSFA member Riverwalk Vapors, Salt Lake City will be a host city for A Billion Lives.

The United Nations’ World Health Organization projects that a billion people will die this century from smoking. This award winning and Oscar contending documentary highlights the lies and corruption by top governments and health agencies around the world intent on allowing smokers to die all in the name of money.

Big brother has lied again…They’re trying to force an entire industry out of business that is helping people to stop smoking.    ~ Herman Cain

The truth about the corruption will be aired at 9:30pm on Thursday November 3rd at Brewvies Cinema Pub in Salt Lake City. The Utah Smoke Free Association has sent tickets to top Utah government officials, elected representatives, health agencies and media so they may attend and learn about the corruption many of them have unknowingly fallen prey to. Smoking related disease kills Utah smokers at a rate of nearly 5 times that of the opioid epidemic and our state is not doing enough to fix the problem.

“The makers of this film did their due diligence, the narrative of this movie is immaculate.”     ~Kevin Crowley

As of this posting, there are less than 60 tickets available for this one night only show. Tickets are $13 each (with an add’l $1 processing fee) and must be purchased online via: https://www.tugg.com/events/a-billion-lives-putz. The ticket fees cover the cost of the theater rental, fees for distribution (Tugg), production company costs and a percentage of the ticket sales are returned to the Utah Smoke Free Association to support statewide advocacy.

We encourage everyone in the community to reach out directly to their elected representatives to alert them to this premier and suggest they make the time to view it. The UTSFA is happy to provide tickets to them at no cost to them or the taxpayers but they will need to request it directly from us.

We have created a Facebook event to help show support and provide a location for people to discuss the event https://www.facebook.com/events/314815875557279/

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Casino night advocacy fundraiser

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The Utah Smoke Free Association and the Wyoming chapter of SFATA have teamed up for our 2nd annual Advocacy Casino Night fundraiser to support vaping advocacy. The majority of all proceeds raised will go to support the Right to be Smoke-Free Coalition (www.r2bsmokefree.org) and their legal fund for the FDA lawsuit and 100% of all proceeds will stay in advocacy.

Following Wyoming and Federal laws, this event is open to the public and you must be 18 or older with a valid government issued ID to enter – MUST HAVE CURRENT AND VALID ID TO ENTER, NO EXCEPTIONS

Admission is $10 (cash only) for entry only or $15 (cash only) if you want event entry PLUS the gift bag, casino points, beverage coupon & 5 prize tickets (only 50 gift bags available).

We have Casino Parties of Utah providing gambling fun for all participants from 5-9pm with Blackjack, Craps and Roulette tables. There will be food provided along with soda, beer and malt beverages (21+ strictly enforced) for an additional cost. We are also working on bringing in advocacy experts to talk to everyone about the federal and state battles to help each of you fight back against the unjust regulations.

Please see our Facebook event for full details: https://www.facebook.com/events/562646627270722/

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I Vape I Vote

IvapeIvote

ATTENTION UTAH!

There are several Calls to Action in the works that will be released soon. In the meantime, it is VITAL that you take action NOW and make sure you are REGISTERED TO VOTE!

We will be hosting a few in-person “I Vape I Vote” voter registration events very soon but in the meantime, please do your civic duty and register to vote. The only way we can help beat bad legislation, is to ensure those introducing it do not get reelected. Vapers ARE voters and we are 10 million strong. Get registered, make your voice heard and lead by example!

Please click on the picture above to register online TODAY!

 

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Utah regulatory rules update meeting

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This meeting is open to everyone in the Utah vapor industry to get a comprehensive update on our existing laws & regulations and get a view into the future for what is coming down the path affecting our industry. If you own a business and want to remain in business after July 1 2016, it will be in your best interest to attend to understand how regulations will affect you. Please note, this is NOT a vape meet and no alcohol will be allowed or served.

Many of the retailers throughout the valley will be shutting down for this meeting. While a loss in sales for a day is nothing we want for any of our local retailers, the permanent loss in sales is more devastating and they want to try and make sure this doesn’t happen. Signs will be posted on the doors of all retailers who are participating in the shutdown in advance so you all know who are taking part in the shutdown.

 Who should attend:

Anyone who owns a Utah vapor industry business, is employed by the industry or who wishes to break into the industry. This is a public event so anyone with an interest in what is going on or those who would like to get involved and help out should attend as well.

What’s being discussed?
We’ll cover all the existing laws in the state to make sure everyone understands the legalities of operating correctly. We will discuss the recent introduction of HB415 and how that affects everyone. We will also discuss upcoming county and state level regulations from the health department along with regulations in other states (specifically Texas, Indiana & California) which affect anyone selling nationally.

Event Details:

September 20th, 2-5pm
Kay’s Crossing Apartments, rooftop clubhouse
60 South Main Street, Layton Utah 84041
Clubhouse event door code is 071885
If you are wanting to attend and cannot find a ride, take Frontrunner. Get off at the Layton Station and you will be in the parking lot of the event.
Retailers closing for the meeting are (updated daily):
  • iVape
  • Vapor Dreams
  • Vapor Craziness
  • ElectronicStix – all 3 locations
  • Vape Affliction
  • Vapor Logic
  • EB Vapors

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Have you heard the news?

 

 

If you haven’t heard about this yet – you must be living under a rock!  The Utah Smoke Free Association in partnership with the Wyoming chapter of SFATA with help from Mystix & Straight Line Vapors in Wyoming, have been planning a massive end of summer vape event like no other.  This isn’t a trade show. There are no vendor booths.  This is an event for YOU, the every day vaper.

 

 

The Casino Vape Party is going to be the largest regional event in our dual state history. It is scheduled for August 8th at 7pm in Evanston Wyoming (we have hotel blocks set aside). We have over 35 sponsors who have come together to make this possible.  Under the “big top” tent, we will have:

  • DJ
  • Food
  • Blackjack
  • Roulette
  • Craps
  • Beer (for the 21 and over crowd), soda for everyone else
  • Gift bags valued at over $100 for the first 50 to show up
  • OVER $4000 in prizes

Click here for the party page and the Facebook invite for full details but make plans to attend this awesome event!

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Wyoming Vape Meet


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On Saturday April 25th from 5pm to Midnight, our vaping brethren from Wyoming are hosting their 2nd annual statewide vape meet (https://www.facebook.com/WyomingVapeMeet).  Don’t let the location fool you, these vapers know how to throw down.  At last year’s event, they had nearly 400 vapers attend in a small apartment complex clubhouse.  This year is going to be bigger, badder and lots more fun.

 

This event is being sponsored by our good friends at Straight-Line Vapors and Steam Vapor Company with exhibitors from all over the state.  They will have a cloud comp, vape trick contest, juice tasting, tons of prizes, DJ, food and drinks and much more.  The Utah Smoke Free Association has also been asked to come speak to the crowd about advocacy and to help keep their boots marching.

 

We know this is a LONG haul out to Cheyenne and it’s the weekend before Vape Summit but how many times can you get 2 big events within a driving distance of Utah?  Let’s show our vaping family in Wyoming some of that love and crash their party!  2 of the UT Smoke Free Association board members will be leaving SLC early Saturday morning to make the drive so if you want join in our convoy, just let us know!

 

 

You’ll probably want to grab a hotel while you are there because the ranch is fully booked up.  So to make it easy, here’s a map of all the hotels nearby.  The Quality Inn is the closest to the ranch and is about a 15 minute drive down highway 87 but certainly there are many options just a few minutes further North.

 

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