Once again, the controversial Minnesota bill HF 848 Article 7, Sections 5-13 is being reassigned to the state’s House Tax Conference Committee for review. If approved and possibly signed into law by Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton, it would instantly place a $9 tax on all 30ml bottles of e-juice. That’s the equivalent of $0.30 per milliliter, and according to the Consumer Advocates for Smokefree Alternatives Association (CASSA), the regulations would also affect all devices and hardware.
Currently, there is already a hefty 95% wholesale tax in place for all e-liquid sales in Minnesota, but this new legislation would make the extra $9 tax apply to even those e-liquids that contain 0mg of nicotine. Apparently, the newest version of HF 848 changes the statute to apply to any combustible product instead of just those that contain nicotine. And a combustible product might also be viewed as any vape mod, battery, or coil.
Please take action NOW and click here to send a message to your lawmakers urging them to remove Article 7, Sections 5-13.
What’s next with the Minnesota $9 Vape Tax?
HF 848 still has several steps ahead in the approval process, but vapers should be very concerned. The recent announcement of the FDA e-cig regulations seems to be opening the door for a new surge in state-issued anti-vaping legislation across the entire United States. Just hours ago, the New Jersey legislature’s Health Committee also approved the controversial Bill S-298 that would outlaw all flavored e-juices statewide, with the exception of tobacco, menthol, and clove flavors.
(Related Article: NEW JERSEY’S S-298 APPROVED; BAN ON FLAVORED E-JUICES LOOKS IMMINENT)
But the Minnesota bill is hitting rather close to home for one particular e-commerce site. Vapes.com, the owner of this blog, has offices based in Montana. If HF 848 manages to gain approval by both the State Senate and House Assembly, then it heads over to the Governor’s desk where he can either sign it into law or issue a veto. And the chances of a Democratic Governor vetoing any form of anti-vaping legislation are very slim.
Vapes.com in jeopardy if HF 848 becomes law
So, if the worst case scenario does occur and HF 848 become law, Vapes.com might have to either close up shop or relocate its offices to an entirely different state. But even then, who’s to say that the next state won’t implement some other wicked sales tax or strange product restriction?
What’s happening in Minnesota and New Jersey could very well spread across the entire country, state-by-state, and in record time. All it takes is one lone state to have the gumption to get the ball rolling. And Minnesota and New Jersey seem to be fearless at the moment.
The FDA issued devastating federal regulations, and now the individual states seem to be viewing this as permission to pile on the vaping industry, as well. CASAA encourages all members of the vaping community to email Minnesota lawmakers to ask them to oppose HF 848. In fact, the organization even includes an easy-to-complete form letter that submits instantly to the appropriate authorities.
(Related Article: MN - The Vapor Tax is back! CASAA FORM LETTER)