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Dayton Splits With Health Commissioner On E-Cigs

March 26, 2014, 8:40 AM

Dayton Splits With Health Commissioner On E-Cigs
ST. PAUL, MN -

Gov. Mark Dayton has broken with his Health Department commissioner over the extent of regulation needed on electronic cigarettes.

Dayton says he is uncomfortable with legislative efforts to put e-cigarettes in the same category as conventional cigarettes when it comes to prohibition of use in public spaces. His comments published Wednesday directly contradict testimony from Health Commissioner Ed Ehlinger.

Dayton says he would sign a bill to restrict children's ability to buy e-cigarettes, but he would likely oppose proposed restrictions on their use indoors.

In a Senate committee Monday, Ehlinger described the vapor-emitting devices as "a threat to the health of the public" that could undermine the state's law barring tobacco use in public buildings and most businesses.

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