Referendum filed to overturn California flavored tobacco ban

August 31, 2020

By Jeremy B. White

Opponents of California’s recently signed ban on flavored tobacco are seeking to overturn the law with a referendum, following a common industry playbook to battle unwanted California laws.

The measure that Gov. Gavin Newsom signed into law on Friday, CA SB793 (19R), prohibits flavored tobacco with an exemption for hookah — a landmark victory for public health interests who have warned that vapes loaded with sweet flavors are hooking a new generation on nicotine. Tobacco and convenience store interests waged a fierce but unsuccessful fight to block the bill.

Now foes of the measure are looking to voters. The California Secretary of State reported Monday receiving a proposal for a referendum that would nullify the law, and the listed filers have past connections to the tobacco industry...