From State Representative Kathy Rapp:

My legislation to make Pennsylvania the next state to prohibit the sale of electronic cigarettes and other related “vaping” products to minors unanimously passed the state House this week.

According to the latest data, more than 16 million children, ages 17 and under, are living in 10 states where they can purchase e-cigarettes almost as easily as a pack of gum or a candy bar. It is imperative that the Legislature act now to add Pennsylvania to the list of 40 other states that have already taken the necessary steps to keep e-cigarettes, e-cigars and all other similar adult-only products out of our children’s hands by adopting House Bill 954.”

House Bill 954 would add nicotine delivery products to the list of tobacco products that are illegal to sell to minors, including electronic cigarettes. It would still be legal to sell e-cigarettes and vape pens in Pennsylvania – just not to children. The penalties would be the same as under current law for selling cigarettes and other traditional tobacco products to minors.

E-cigarettes, sometimes known as “vape pens,” are used to deliver nicotine and other substances into the body in the form of a vapor. The products come in a variety of flavors and generally resemble the size and shape of traditional cigarettes, which may increase their appeal to minors. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officials have confirmed that calls to poison centers involving e-cigarettes have surged in recent years.

In 2014, the CDC reported a dramatic increase in the number of high school students who indicated they had tried e-cigarettes, including many who previously had never smoked.

The bill now goes to the Senate for consideration. Visit RepRapp.com or Facebook.com/RepRapp for the latest legislative updates.