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Inslee wants permanent ban on flavored vape products

The Seattle Times reports Gov. Jay Inslee is preparing to introduce legislation that would make the state's emergency ban on flavored vaping products permanent.

SEATTLE — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee plans to introduce tougher legislation on vaping that would make the emergency ban on flavored vape products permanent.

When the next legislative session picks up in January, The Seattle Times reports Inslee’s proposal would put a cap on nicotine levels in non-THC vaping products, eliminate bulk sales and give broader authority to the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board and State Health Secretary to issue bans or seize illegal products.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) identified vitamin E acetate as a “chemical of concern” as they investigate vaping-related illnesses and deaths across the country. Washington state added vaping products that have that ingredient to their emergency ban list in November.

Kevin Knapp, who owns Pure Vapor in West Seattle, wrote in a text message he is confident his business will be able to survive the temporary ban that remains in effect until February 7, 2020. However, a permanent ban would mean they would "not be able to operate as a traditional vape shop."

RELATED: West Seattle vape shop owner concerned by ban on flavored vaping products

Tim Robinson, a Seattle Public Schools spokesperson, says while it’s too early to tell if the ban that went into effect Oct. 10 has had an impact on the number of vaping incidents they see in their school, they’re still very concerned.

SPS has filed a lawsuit against Juul, one of the largest e-cigarette brands, saying they deliberately marketed their products to youth.

From 2016-2018, Seattle Public Schools says there was a 250% increase in the number of 10th graders who say they had vaped within the past 30 days.

RELATED: American Medical Association calls for total ban on e-cigarette, vaping products

And a new tobacco survey from the CDC shows that roughly 6.2 million middle and high school students were current users of some type of tobacco – and e-cigarettes were the most commonly used.

While there hasn’t been much action on a federal level, many states have tried to take up laws of their own. If Washington state does get a permanent ban on flavored vaping products they’d join Massachusetts as the only states to do so at this point.