Vapin’ in the Boy’s Room.
This week the Interim Study Committee on Fiscal Policy met to review the taxation of e-cigarettes as a way in which to address the growing health concerns of vaping and to start the conversation on regulating an industry that is currently unregulated in Indiana. In addition to the 75-reported cases in Indiana of illnesses directly traced back to vaping, health advocates say teens who vape are more likely to become cigarette smokers – and that is bad for business, according to Kevin Brinegar, president and CEO of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce. With a smoking rate that’s 50 percent higher than the U.S. average and 327 percent increase in the number of young people using e-cigarettes, both the productivity and health of the Hoosier workforce are (literally) in danger. Brinegar believes the state needs a 24 percent tax on vaping products, the same rate as the tax on traditional cigarettes. OneZone and the Indiana Chamber of Commerce support taxing both vaping products and traditional cigarettes … but to date, no one has been able to get that measure to the desk of the Governor. Stay tuned.