Florida Legislature Considering Bill That Would Decimate Local Tobacco Control

ACS CAN strongly opposes and urges all members to vote no on this harmful legislation

April 18, 2019

TALLAHASSEE – The Florida House Commerce Committee has approved a bill, sponsored by Representative Spencer Roach (R – North Ft. Myers) that would strip communities of their authority to regulate tobacco marketing, which would undermine decades of successful tobacco control work around the state. Following is a statement is from ACS CAN’s Government Relations Director in Florida Matt Jordan:

“Today, with the passage of House Bill 1299 by Representative Spencer Roach, the House Commerce Committee has advanced legislation that would set local tobacco control efforts back decades by blocking communities from passing their own laws to combat tobacco use, including the epidemic of youth e-cigarette use. Preemption is a tactic the tobacco industry has supported across the country for decades to protect their bottom line and make it more difficult for communities to protect their kids from the industry’s aggressive marketing of products that come in kid-friendly candy and fruit flavors.

“The most important battle in the fight against youth tobacco use happens on the front lines, at the point of sale. Stripping local governments of their authority to regulate the marketing of these products puts all of our young people at risk

 “Tobacco remains the leading cause of preventable death in our state, claiming the lives of more than 32,300 Floridians annually. An estimated 5,600 Florida kids become new daily smokers each year. And, the tremendous growth in e-cigarette use among youth is further exacerbating this problem.

“The tobacco industry spends more than $614 million annually in Florida to hook future generations to their deadly products. Unless current smoking rates decline, 270,000 Florida kids alive today will eventually die prematurely from tobacco-related illnesses. The Florida legislature can’t bow to the pressures of Big Tobacco, which preys on youth to replace the adults who are dying from their products.  ACS CAN strongly opposes this bill and urges all members to vote no on this harmful legislation.”

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state and local levels. ACS CAN empowers advocates across the country to make their voices heard and influence evidence-based public policy change as well as legislative and regulatory solutions that will reduce the cancer burden. As the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is critical to the fight for a world without cancer. For more information, visit


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