CHULA VISTA, Calif. (KGTV) — The Chula Vista City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to ban the sale of flavored tobacco products in the city.
Before the unanimous vote, the council heard dozens of comments from the community.
Parents asked the council to take these products off the market, while students said they’ve seen their classmates use these flavored products at school on a regular basis.
During Tuesday night’s meeting, city staff made a presentation, which included a survey of teenage students at the Sweetwater Union High School District.
The city says over 2,400 students responded to the survey, and 35% said they've tried an e-cigarette or vape.
Business owners who sell flavored tobacco products in the city asked the council to vote against this ban or wait until the statewide vote on the issue this November.
They say the city never reached out to the businesses for their feedback and asked the council to consider the economic impact this ban would have on their livelihoods. The business owners argued that underage tobacco users will find a way to get the products anyway, insisting they only sell to those of legal purchasing age.
The ban eventually passed unanimously, after the mayor and several city councilmembers shared personal experiences about how tobacco use has impacted their families.
The ban still needs a second reading before it is finalized, and if approved then, it would take effect on Jan. 1, 2023.