While it’s news to no one that e-cigarettes and vaping have become a huge trend among all demographics, it should also come as no surprise that the government wants to tack on an inflated tax to our latest smoking pleasure. Washington State legislature has recently approved a new bill, HB 1873, that will instate a tax on e-liquids, e-cigarette cartridges and even hardware devices.
Still pending its final signatures, after a heated session about the future of HB 1873, one legislator felt a call to action and is actively trying to put a halt on this bill. Drew MacEwen and the Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association (CASAA) have joined forces and hope to gain support and written testimonials from users in Washington about the positive impacts of vapor products in their lives and the long-term effects of this tax. Stopping this bill in its tracks is not impossible, but it will require the voices of the masses.
Whether you gave up traditional cigarettes and made the transition to e-cigarettes, have friends and family that are vapers, want to take a stand against another unfair tax, are supporters of BLVK Unicorn or you simply want your voice to be heard, CASAA has created a user friendly template for an easy submission to get the public's comments to the governor in hopes of stopping the bill.
This tax will not only effect users, but it will more severely impact e-liquid producers like BLVK Unicorn and vape shops throughout the country. Proposing an increase of 9 cents per millimeter on bottles containing 5mL or more, this will significantly alter prices and production costs. Cartridges under 5mL will also be subject to a raise of 27 cents per mL, so no matter what your style of vaping, you will directly see the changes if this bill is pushed through.
With dozens of vape shops scattered through Washington, owners are scrambling to stay relevant in this already competitive market and this tax will be detrimental to the more popular vape companies as well as small businesses. If passed, it has the potential to shut down their operations completely. This will force vapers to seek e-liquid and vapor products from other outlets and impact the profits statewide.
If signed, HB 1873 is expected to gain an estimated $19 million in just two calendar years. The money would be equally allotted to public health services and a research fund dedicated to cancer and the prevention of teenage consumption and enforcement. Aside from the change of cost, manufactures fear that this will drive people back to regular tobacco products all together and possibly shut down the market in Washington entirely.
While it is a lot to digest and consider, it will be interesting to see how this plays out among Washington’s legislature, as well as to see if other states will follow suit and attempt to implement a similar tax. This could be a large turning point for the future of electronic cigarettes and vaporizers and a potentially big advantage to the conventional tobacco businesses.