Unified Vapor Battle Update: Dec 20
FROM THE VTA BOARD OF DIRECTORS on the Unified Vapor Battle Update: Dec 20
On December 11, 2017, VTA along with the Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association (“CASAA”), the American Vaping Association (“AVA”), and the Smoke Free Alternatives Trade Association (“SFATA”), issued our Unified Front Letter to the vapor industry advising that the time was close to step up and support our call to action to change the predicate date, as part of the pending FY 2018 Appropriations process.
That same day, the American E-Liquid Manufacturing Standards Association (“AEMSA”) announced that it had taken a remarkable unilateral action that directly conflicted with the will of the overwhelming majority of the vapor industry. Specifically, AEMSA announced that it sent a letter to House and Senate leaders in the United States Congress, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, directly attacking a legitimate and important legislative strategy that VTA and every other advocacy organization has been pursuing for the past three years. In so doing, AEMSA purported to speak on behalf of the entire vapor industry in declaring to Congressional leaders that it would be a mistake to change the predicate date, and claiming that our industry doesn’t need additional short-term relief. In sending their letter, AEMSA demonstrated a complete disregard of the powerful Members of Congress who have graciously stepped forward to champion our industry.
In an effort to mitigate whatever damage AEMSA’s letter may have caused, we were pleased send a Unified Vapor industry letter, from VTA, AVA, CASAA and SFATA, encouraging our Congressional leaders to do the right thing and change the predicate date. Here are examples of the Unified Vapor Letter (House) and the Unified Vapor Letter (Senate) that VTA’s team delivered to the Hill on December 14, 2017.
Individuals and groups may disagree on policy and strategy. However, nothing gives one group license to undermine years of important relationship building and issue building in Congress simply because it has a “strong belief” in another approach. Similarly, nothing justifies one group tearing down a legitimate legislative strategy that could be enormously beneficial to small and mid-sized companies right now, based on the notion that they have a better idea and might be able to secure something better at some point in the distant future.
So, if someone tells you their way is better, if they promise a “permanent” fix, if they tell you that they can solve your entire problem, or tell you that they are going to take vapor out of the Tobacco Control Act, that’s great. Just make sure you ask all the hard questions like, what is the strategy, who is the team that will execute it, how are you going to generate support in the House and Senate, and where are the funds coming from to make it happen? Absent answers to these questions, you are just being offered ideas and words.
To that end, our fights are not ideological and not hypothetical. They are real, they are present, and the clock is ticking. Effective advocacy requires that we engage in strategies that can bring relief to our industry, engage in battles that are winnable, and that we build on prior success. Our industry does not have the luxury of hope. We are in a pitched battle and if we are repeatedly distracted from singularly focusing on our real enemies, we’ll wake up one day with a basket full of beliefs but no believers in government.
As we look forward to another year, we invite all of you to join our continuing efforts to level the playing field and secure a bright future for the vapor industry in the U.S. by working simultaneously with Congress and the Administration. For more information on why this one prong of our multi-pronged strategy is important to small, mid-sized and large companies alike, please read our Changing the Predicate Date Summary and FAQ.
VTA Board of Directors
Note from J.G. at VapeSling LLC:
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This and all groups who continue the community VapeFight will be supported past, present and future by VSLLC. All Vapers and Vape Industry want is fair regulations. Presently, the FDA regulations have been written in a aggressive and unfair manner. The requirement for PMTA has no merit in it’s application, rather for the industry to collapse in financial burden. All items introduced should face a regulatory means for safety and consumption. The comparison would be Ketchup and Fancy Ketchup: 1 Ketchup PMTA is good for all variations in flavor. Why not with Vape E-liquid?