California Bill to Ban Store Sales of Flavored Tobacco Products Clears First Major Hurdle

May 13, 2020

For Immediate Release  – Office of State Senator Jerry Hill – May 13, 2020
Click here to see hearing video or view in frame below.

Bill Barring Retail Sales of Flavored Tobacco Products Advances in State Senate

Health Committee Passes SB 793 on 8-1 Vote

California Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis Joins Health Advocates and Youth Testifying for Bill Backed by Nearly 40 Lawmakers


SACRAMENTOSenate Bill 793, the legislation introduced by Senator Jerry Hill to prohibit retail sales of flavored tobacco products, cleared its first major hurdle today when the Senate Health Committee voted 8-1 in favor of the bill, sending it to the Senate Appropriations Committee for further review.

In asking for an “aye” vote on the bill aimed at halting widespread youth consumption of the flavored products, Senator Hill noted that tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death and disease. “We also need to be cognizant of the long-term consequences of a new generation hooked on nicotine,” he said. “1,300 people die every day due to tobacco related illnesses. There is no reason the most deadly product on earth needs to have a candy flavor.”

California Lieutenant Governor Eleni Kounalakis, a bill cosponsor, was the first to testify in favor of the legislation. Video of the hearing is available here

SB 793 would prohibit store sales of flavored tobacco products including e-cigarettes, e-hookahs, e-pipes and other vaping devices, as well as all flavored smokable and nonsmokable tobacco products, including cigars, cigarillos, pipe tobacco, chewing tobacco, snuff, and tobacco edibles. SB 793 would also prohibit the sale of “flavor enhancer” e-liquids, which heighten or add candy, fruit, menthol and other flavors, and are used to make DIY vape juices.

Nearly 40 state lawmakers are coauthoring the bill with Senator Hill:

Senators Steve Glazer, D-Orinda, Mike McGuire, D-North Coast/North Bay, Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, and Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, are joint authors of the bill. Senator Maria Elena Durazo, D-Los Angeles, and Assemblymembers Rebecca Bauer-Kahan, D-Orinda, Marc Berman, D-Palo Alto, Richard Bloom, D-Santa Monica, Lorena Gonzalez, D-San Diego, Kevin McCarty, D-Sacramento, Al Muratsuchi, D-Torrance, Robert Rivas, D-Hollister, and Jim Wood, D-Santa Rosa are principal coauthors. The coauthors in upper house are Senators Bob Archuleta, D-Pico Rivera, Jim Beall, D- San Jose, Bill Dodd, D-Napa, Lena Gonzalez, D-Long Beach, Robert Hertzberg, D- Van Nuys, Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara, Connie M. Leyva, D-Chino, Bill Monning, D-Carmel, and Jim Nielsen, R-Tehama. Assemblymembers Tasha Boerner Horvath, D-Encinitas, Rob Bonta, D-Oakland, David Chiu, D-San Francisco, Kansen Chu, D-San Jose, Cristina Garcia, D-Bell Gardens, Marc Levine, D-Marin County, Kevin Mullin, D-South San Francisco, Patrick O'Donnell, D-Long Beach, Cottie Petrie-Norris, D-Laguna Beach, Luz Rivas, D-Arleta, Miguel Santiago, D-Los Angeles, Mark Stone, D-Monterey Bay, Phil Ting, D-San Francisco, and Buffy Wicks, D-Oakland, are also coauthors.

In addition to Lieutenant Governor Kounalakis, the American Cancer Society, Cancer Action Network California; American Heart Association; the American Lung Association; the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and Common Sense are bill cosponsors.


Additional Resources

SB 793 Fact Sheet:


Smoking and COVID-19:

Senator Hill Letter to California Department of Public Health:

Guest Op-Ed in Sacramento Bee:

Letter from 21 Health Advocacy Organizations:

Products Excluded from Federal Controls:

Updated 5/13/2020 6 PM to add video: