By CHRIS MELLIDES
A bill effectively banning the use of vapor products in Arkansas eateries and local businesses fell two votes short of passing Wednesday.
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that the bill was originally sponsored by Senator Eddie Cheatham, a democrat, and that if passed the legislation would have expanded the state’s indoor smoking ban to include e-cigarettes—which would be prohibited in areas where smoking is banned.
A piece of legislation passed in 2006 allows the use of cigarettes in restaurants and bars, so long as they are open to customers 21 years of age and older, according to the Associated Press (AP).
The vote on this bill was met with contention with both sides expressing their support for and against the indoor vaping ban.
Nate Smith, the Arkansas Department of Health Director claims that there is “emerging evidence” that toxic substances have been found in e-liquid, and that it’s impossible for employers to “know whether their employees are using nicotine or some other substance that may or may not be legal.”
Yet Republican Senator Scott Flippo argues that the use of e-cigarettes indoors should be left up to business owners.
“At a certain point on the path that we’re going, pretty soon Mountain Dew, Taco Bell … when is that theoretically going to be next?” Flippo asked.
Chris Mellides is the Managing Editor of VAPE Magazine. A seasoned journalist, he has worked in all areas of the media industry since first getting his start in newspaper reporting. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.