Denver Mayor Vetoes Ban on Flavored Vapes

The Denver mayor blocked a sweeping flavor ban for e-liquids in the city limits.

DENVER — Michael B. Hancock, the Democratic mayor of Denver, Colo., announced that he had vetoed a city council ordinance that bans the sale of flavored vaping products within the city’s limits.

“I am writing to you today to inform you that I have exercised my Charter authority as Mayor to veto CB21-1182, the ban on the sale of flavored tobacco products and accessories,” Hancock wrote in a letter to City Council leadership dated December 10, 2021.

“I share with the sponsors of this ordinance the desire and goal to reduce youth nicotine use in our city, especially youth vaping, which has become increasingly prevalent,” the mayor said. “Previously, we’ve taken steps together to reduce youth nicotine use, including raising the purchase age to 21, instituting a new tobacco retail store license, and enhancing enforcement efforts. We all recognize the public health challenge that flavored tobacco products pose for our city, families, and communities, and as a city government, we have taken steps to address that challenge.”

Denver made national headlines earlier this year when lawmakers in the city council debated the opportunity to ban flavored vaping products within the city limits to protect youth and minors from accessing such tobacco products. Vaping Post previously reported on the debate, noting that the measure is one of several found in the vein of prohibitionist policies toward vaping and risk-reduced tobacco and nicotine products.

The council voted on December 6 in a vote of 8 to 3 in favor of passing the ordinance after the draft bill was adjusted from the October variation initially introduced by members.

According to some local news reports, council members Kendra Black, President Stacie Gilmore, and Paul Kashmann voted no on the measure. Kevin Flynn and Chirs Herndon were absent at the vote and did not cast one in favor or against.

“There is no excuse for Mayor Hancock vetoing this critical ordinance, siding with Big Tobacco over Denver’s kids and the 100+ organizations who support this policy,” said tobacco control lobbyist Jodi Radke, the regional director for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, in an email to The Denver Post earlier.

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