On Wednesday, April 7th, 2021, we hosted Nevada’s very first virtual lobby day training, where we had 20 volunteers from all over the state attend to learn about the importance of tobacco policy in response to reducing youth vaping. Our presenters included Caitlin Gatchalian - Nevada Government Relations Director, Josh Brown – Grassroots Manager, Helen Foley – AHA’s 2021 Nevada Lobbyists, and the advocacy interns, James Wright, Alyssa Lacap, and Elvia Lomeli.
Volunteers were engaged and learned a lot about what is going in Nevada regarding tobacco, especially with current tax laws and tobacco retail licensing. The training focused on AB 59 - Tobacco 21 bill and how Nevada needs stronger enforcement to protect our youth from tobacco products and vaping. As currently written, AB 59 needs tobacco retail licensing amendments that include annual compliance checks paid by the tobacco retail licensing fee, higher monetary penalties, and license suspension leading to revocation for repeat offenders.
The next day, we had our volunteers lobby their legislators that lead to 18 emails, 1 phone call, and virtual meetings. Special thanks to our advocacy interns for setting up and coordinating meetings for our volunteers and legislators. There were new challenges, especially with everything being virtual, but nonetheless, we had a great first virtual event.
A BIG thank you to everyone involved in this awesome event. It was a great way for use to start conversations with legislators regarding the importance of the issues of tobacco in the state of Nevada.