TALLAHASSEE, Fla – Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday night vetoed a bill that would have banned flavored vaping products in Florida.
Senate Bill 810 was first proposed to help reduce vaping by minors. The measure would have banned the use of any flavored nicotine liquid not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. It would have also formally raised the age to buy tobacco and vaping products in Florida to 21.
The vaping industry, though, vigorously fought the measure because of the potential impact on small businesses and how it would affect hundreds of thousands of Floridians who use the products.
In his veto letter, DeSantis called vaping a “reduced-risk alternative” to cigarettes and said the legislation “would almost assuredly lead more people to resume smoking cigarettes."
The governor also raised concerns that the ban could drive more people to the black market. He said that could be significant because of the nationwide cases of lung illness traced to black market vape cartridges containing THC.
DeSantis also said the provision in the bill raising the minimum age to purchase products to 21 is “superfluous” given that’s the age already mandated by federal law.
As for the issue of underage use, the governor said it is still an important goal, but that it “will not be achieved by eliminating legal products for adults and by devastating the small businesses who provide these adults with reduced risk alternatives to cigarettes.”