The meeting over at the C3-PH today was a bit chaotic and I guess what they really mean with “informal” is lots of people all trying to have a say and things being a little… disorganized. There were about 40 or so people there in total and only two ladies from the department. I noticed in the round of quick introductions that none of the body parts (ALA, ACS, etc.) folks were there which I thought was a little odd unless they already had done all their groundwork with them. And, indeed, as I suspected, they have.
My impression is that they don’t want to weaken anything or budge on things. They clearly have their minds made up to be the next county to move on this. According to their research about 95 businesses would be affected by this in the unincorporated areas.
Most of the people there were 711 owners and a few of their representatives. They had strong and solid arguments on issues but the ladies kept cutting people off and interrupting them. The meeting was clearly not about seeking input but really just about going through the motions so they can claim they sought input from those affected.
In the last 20 minutes or so of the meeting a few of us made our arguments regarding the flavor ban component. On the subject of 0-nic products they didn’t want to budge and cited the old 2009 report about a mislabeled 0-nic that contained nic from a foreign (Chinese) sample of liquid. Since they had been spending the past hour interrupting people I figured I could do the same thing and explained how the 2009 report is really no longer valid in todays industry, etc. Their counter argument was that this industry is not regulated, which caused a lot of deeming reg comments to be made. It became obvious that they are not well versed in what the current state of things is with regard to the FDA and the compliance process that’s already underway.
The end result is that I don’t believe they are taking our arguments into consideration at all and the ordinance will be moving to the family-and-something committee soon where the next hearing is set for April 24th. Which means, we have some time to mount some larger opposition.
In the meantime, as we plan further steps for the April 24th meeting… THANK YOU ALL for being there and being part of this. As boring as these things get, it at least puts us on record as opposing their plans.