BY EMILY MIBACH
Daily Post Staff Writer
San Carlos may soon ban e-cigarettes such as Juul, which adults use to quit smoking but kids are buying to get a nicotine buzz.
Banning Juul sales was proposed by newly elected Councilman Adam Rak during a meeting Monday on the topic of banning smoking in apartments and prohibiting the sale of flavored tobacco products, including menthol cigarettes.
Mayor Mark Olbert said he wanted to ban flavored tobacco products to keep kids away from them. Juul offers flavors such as mango, fruit, creme and others.
No formal decision was made Monday, but council members were clear that they are interested in banning smoking in apartments and banning the sale of e-cigarettes.
The ordinances will likely come before council in March or April, depending on how quickly they are written and then analyzed by the city’s planning commission. About 10 people spoke at Monday’s meeting, all in favor of apartment smoking and flavored tobacco bans.
Randy Huang with Breathe California, a nonprofit dedicated to ending smoking, said a survey done in 2015 showed that 25% of 9th graders in the Sequoia Union High School District had tried vaping, and suggested that the number has only gone up in the past four years.
The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors last year was met with opposition last year by merchants in North Fair Oaks before passing a similar ban on flavored tobacco sales.
Merchants said that the state already prohibits the sale of tobacco products to anyone under 21, and a full ban would hurt their businesses. There are 12 stores in San Carlos that sell tobacco products and only one dedicated smoke shop, according to Assistant City Manger Tara Peterson.