Massachusetts Governor Pursues Emergency Regulation for Temporary Vape Ban
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Massachusetts Governor Pursues Emergency Regulation for Temporary Vape Ban

The Public Health Council approved Gov. Charlie Baker’s emergency regulation after a state judge ruled that the state must treat the ban like an emergency rule for public health reasons.

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October 28, 2019

Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration has received approval from the Public Health Council on an emergency regulation that would maintain its temporary ban on all vaping products in Massachusetts.

The Public Health Council unanimously approved the emergency regulation at an Oct. 25 meeting, and the regulation will be formally filed Oct. 28 with Secretary of State William Galvin’s office, according to a WBUR report.

On Oct. 23, a judge rejected Baker’s appeal of an earlier ruling that would halt his administration’s four-month ban on vape sales, which was originally set in motion Sept. 24 in response to the nationwide outbreak of vape-related lung illness. Suffolk Superior Court Judge Douglas Wilkins gave Baker’s office until Oct. 28 to appeal the ruling or go through the process of treating the ban like an emergency rule for public health reasons, the latter of which Baker has now pursued.

The Baker administration said the emergency rule is in compliance with Wilkins’ order, and should be sufficient to prevent the ban from lifting, WBUR reported. In pursuing the emergency regulation, Baker’s office must now to hold a public hearing by Dec. 24 to allow businesses and other stakeholders to offer feedback and perspectives on the policy. And while Baker’s initial ban spanned four months, the regulatory process will shorten the ban to three months, according to WBUR.