EDISON, NJ – Legislation sponsored by Assemblywoman Nancy J. Pinkin to ensure liquid nicotine does not get into the hands of children was signed into law today.
“Most bottles of liquid nicotine state right on the label that it can be poisonous if ingested," said Pinkin (D-Middlesex). "Like so many other dangerous products on the market that require child-proofing, this should be one of them as well, especially given the fact that liquid nicotine comes in a variety of flavors that might smell enticing to an unsuspecting child.”
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics the amount of nicotine in some small 15-milliliter bottles of “e-liquid” is enough to kill four small children. E-cigarette and liquid nicotine-related calls to the New Jersey Poison Information and Education System rose from 9 in 2011 to 45 in 2014, according to the Department of Health.
Specifically, the new law prohibits the sale and distribution of liquid nicotine unless the liquid nicotine is sold, offered for sale, given, furnished, or distributed in a child-resistant container which is required to meet the federal design, construction, and testing requirements set forth in federal regulations.
The bill defines “liquid nicotine” to mean any solution containing nicotine which is designed or sold for use with an electronic smoking device. Violations of the bill would be punishable by a civil penalty of not less than $250 for the first violation, not less than $500 for the second violation, and $1,000 for the third and each subsequent violation.
Additionally, upon the recommendation of the municipality, following a hearing by the municipality, the state Division of Taxation may suspend or, after a second or subsequent violation, revoke the license of a retail dealer. The licensee would also be subject to administrative charges, based on a schedule issued by the Director of the Division of Taxation, which may provide for a monetary penalty in lieu of a suspension.
“I am pleased that the Governor has signed this bill,” said Pinkin. “It is a practical and common-sense measure that simply protects our children from the harmful effects of liquid nicotine. My hope is that it saves children’s lives.”
The bill was co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter (D-Passaic/Bergen) and Assemblyman Dan Benson (D-Mercer/Middlesex), as well as Senator Richard Codey (D-Essex/Morris) and Senator Linda Greenstein (D-Middlesex/Mercer)
Assemblywoman Pinkin represents the 18th Legislative District which includes East Brunswick, Edison, Helmetta, Highland Park, Metuchen, South Plainfield, and South River.