Tobacco Sales Bill - Raised to 21?
It's coming. Along with new taxation and regulation; with an end goal? Okay. But it best be legitimate. The tax revenue will supposedly provide funding for a National Cancer Institute-designed Cancer Center in the state. The overhead in this project would be University of Arkansas Medical Sciences. So, hopefully as legitimate as it could possibly be, but you can't expect to throw around the "C" word and not expect the vast majority of the state's population to relate and have questions. I think that's fair.
Here's the agenda, as we understand it:
- Sale regulation and taxation of tobacco, cigarette paper, and e-cigarettes
- Amend the unfair cigarette sales act
- Amend the age of which a person can purchase tobacco products, cigarette paper, alternative nicotine products, and e-cigarettes.
- Amend the Arkansas tobacco products act of 1977.
- Create additional tax on cigarette paper
- Dedicate additional tax revenue to University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in obtaining the status as a National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center.
Here's the bottom line:
This new bill states that you must be 21 years of age to purchase or consume tobacco products, cigarette papers, nicotine products & e-cigarettes.
You are or will be at least 19 during the year of 2019. I'll repeat - If you are 19 or will BE 19 IN '19, you will not be grandfathered in as a "minor" under this bill.
You are under 21 years of age and also present a military I.D. establishing that you are a member of the U.S. Armed Forces.
Something else which might raise a flag for "underage" or under 21 employees of establishments who sell tobacco or nicotine products: You are safe for now. No one should be in fear of being booted from their job because of your age. Employees under 21, at least 18 years of age are still cleared to sell under current laws.
We all know age doesn't determine maturity. You don't have to tell us. We aren't feeling any particular way about this just yet, honestly. As our first and main concern will always be the safety and well-being of our people. Our people meaning all people. From our community to across the state to our own family and loved ones. It's what is most important.
Now, could this bill have some trickling effects we have yet to foresee? Sure! But for now, this is what we know.
As always, we will make it a priority to report on any changes or updates concerning this bill or events surrounding it.
Emerald's Triangle LLC
Shaman's Reach Inc.
Below is a link to the PDF of original documents for Act 580, formerly referred to as 1565.
Sources: Arkansas House Reps: A. Davis, M Gray, L. Johnson, Maddox Arkansas Senators: J. Dismang, Irvin.