Dear BEAA Members,
I wanted to write a short note to bring the membership up to date on where we are with the process of dealing with the FDA regulations. As all of you are aware the FDA took an unprecedented step in changing the definition of tobacco to include vapor and e-cigarettes, in an effort to increase the regulatory burdens on our industry. Many of you have asked what steps, as an association, we are taking to combat this overreach by the Federal Government. As you may already know other vapor businesses and associations have been preparing for these regulations for months and are already filing law suits. 3 weeks ago, your Board, met with an attorney about our options, and we decided by a unanimous vote to join our colleagues around the country and sue the FDA.
The BEAA has retained Montgomery Attorney, Joe Hubbard, to sue the FDA and enjoin these regulations before they are implemented. Our plan is to coordinate our litigation with the other vapor entities filing suit. Because Alabama’s courts are the best venue for such an action, the direction of these cases will depend heavily on what we are able to accomplish in court. We are in the process of preparing the paperwork to file suit in the Middle Alabama District. We currently have 2 BEAA members with businesses organized in the middle district that have agreed to be become a plaintiff. Mr. Hubbard requested a minimum of 2 plaintiffs but would like as many as possible. The middle district consists of the following counties; Autauga, Barbour, Bullock, Butler, Chambers, Chilton, Coffee, Coosa, Covington, Crenshaw, Dale, Elmore, Geneva, Henry, Houston, Lee, Lowndes, Macon, Montgomery, Pike, Randolph, Russell &Tallapoosa. We welcome any upstanding vapor related businesses located in this district to be added to the plaintiff list. Plaintiff must be a BEAA member in good standing to participate in this action.
We have negotiated a deal with Mr. Hubbard to proceed through 3 phases of the law suit with phase 1 being paid in full and future phases being funded as we proceed. Over the next few weeks, look for updates as we progress with the filing of this law suit.
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