Senate Bill 131, “Tobacco Products Act”, passed the Senate by a 28 to 11 vote and the House of Representatives by a 40 to 28 vote. Together with our dedicated members, the Premium Cigar Association secured important amendments that will continue to protect your premium tobacco business. Of note, PCA worked to:
- Remove the prohibition of self-service displays. This provision would have eliminated customer access to your humidor.
- Remove the prohibition on selling pipe tobacco and cigars outside original manufacturer packaging. This would have eliminated your ability to sell pipe tobacco in small quantities and single stick cigars unless wrapped in cellophane by the manufacturer.
- Secured, with industry partners, preemption of tobacco regulation across the state. Preemption protects against a confusing and discriminatory patchwork of local laws that create uncertainty for small businesses.
S.B. 131 also establishes a statewide licensure system for retail tobacco stores. The non-refundable application fee not to exceed $750 and an annual renewal fee not to exceed $400. The bill will be transmitted to the Governor’s desk for consideration and signature.