Is State Tax Rates Hiking Up The Price Of Vaporizers?
The U.S. tobacco industry is fighting back against efforts by state regulatory bodies and consumers to modify the sale of electric cigarettes. While vaporizers have already been around for quite some time and so are becoming more acceptable in mainstream American life, the tobacco companies are determined to fight these efforts vigorously. They’ve made millions of dollars trying to defeat state taxing and regulation efforts. Now, they’re making their next move: challenging the legality of the taxation themselves. In a fresh legal filing, they’re claiming that the FDA over regulates and creates a “guaranteed” interstate transportation business. The filing happens to be being contested in the courts, and both sides expect a resolution sooner or later soon.
State taxation uprights vaporizers by regulating their sale. It’s estimated that about twenty states have uprights to sell vaporizer devices, including California, Colorado, D.C., Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington. These states have become rapidly in recent years, and as a result, their cigarette tax rates are also growing rapidly. A number of these same states likewise have placed taxes on cigar and pipe tobacco. It seems that smoking just gets more expensive, and that is what the tobacco industry is shooting for.
According to the filing with the FDA, the tobacco industry is being targeted unfairly. The tobacco industry is doing everything they can to fight regulation of vaporizer devices. As we’ve seen, the U.S. Supreme Court has multiple times ruled against the FDA over-regulation of cigarettes. These Puff Bar rulings have gone the door wide open to regulation of vaporizer devices. The FDA claims that over-regulation defeats the purpose of regulating and controlling the use of vaporizers.
The fact is that the FDA itself isn’t even required to regulate or control these industries. Only state governments have that authority. It is the state governments that impose their own taxes, and several states have imposed increased taxes in order to try to curb smoking. However the state governments are themselves at a disadvantage. They can not regulate wholesale prices since these prices are regulated by state laws. In addition they can’t tax the product at a higher rate than the authorities does.
Also, the FDA itself isn’t directly involved in the manufacturing of the vaporizer. Tobacco companies manufacture their own products, and they are the ones that get sued by the states and levied taxes. The FDA merely approves or denies manufacturer licenses based on whether these manufacturers follow federal law. And when the manufacturer doesn’t, then your company doesn’t get its license.
So, the states that impose taxes on vaporizer devices do not get the benefit of having a federal regulator, or perhaps a manufacturer that’s licensed by the state. So, instead, they find ways to increase taxes on the manufactures themselves! Which makes no sense. Why are these manufacturers being targeted specifically? There is no real reason.
THE MEALS and Drug Administration is the federal body responsible for regulating pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements and cosmetics. It has the capacity to ban the production or sale of any chemical or substance that it determines is unsafe. So, why are states trying to tell the FDA to target Vaping online users instead of tobacco manufacturers? The FDA knows that regulating diet pills isn’t likely to work because there are no controlled weight loss supplements currently that you can buy. And, even if there have been, they couldn’t force food manufacturers to sell diet pills containing things that are banned by state law.
So, instead, the states want to force the FDA to come up with some type of rule or regulation that will require a manufacturer to market their devices in a specific manner, according to state regulations. Which makes no sense at all. It also flies when confronted with the original purpose of the Food Drug and Administration Act. Why the FDA is targeting these devices is a question that only experts in the FDA can answer.