Legislature(2017 - 2018)BELTZ 105 (TSBldg)
03/02/2017 01:30 PM Senate LABOR & COMMERCE
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SB 15-E-CIGS: SALE TO AND POSSESSION BY MINOR 1:35:13 PM CHAIR COSTELLO announced the consideration of SB 15. She noted that there was a new committee substitute (CS). 1:35:57 PM SENATOR HUGHES moved to adopt the work draft CS for Senate Bill 15, labeled 30-LS0170\R, as the working document. 1:36:07 PM CHAIR COSTELLO objected for an explanation. TIM LAMKIN, Staff, Senator Gary Stevens, Alaska State Legislature, sponsor of SB 15, reminded the members that the primary purpose of the is bill is to restrict youth access to e- cigarette products. He reviewed the changes between version A and version R of SB 15 speaking to the following summary: [Original punctuation provided.] The Department of Commerce, Community, & Economic Development requested penalties associated with violations of the law restricting youth access to tobacco and E-Cigarette products be increased to more effectively compel compliance, as described below. CSSB 15 (L&C) Version R, increases the criminal and civil penalties (fines) associated with violating the law by selling tobacco, products containing nicotine, or E-Cigarette products to minors, as follows: 1. Under AS 43.70.075(d), the person holding the business license endorsement is fined the following: 1st offense: a civil penalty of $1,000 (increased from $300) 2nd offense: a civil penalty of $2,000 (increased from $500) 3rd offense: a civil penalty of $4,000 (increased from $1,000) After 3 convictions: suspend license indefinitely (increased from 1 year) and a civil penalty of $10,000 (increased from $2,500) The only other substantive change in Version R is regarding the required product 'warning' signage. The verbiage is consolidated to include reference to tobacco products, products containing nicotine, or "electronic smoking products," as being illegal to sell to persons under the age of 19. The dimensions of the signage were reduced to 8.5" x 11" to allow for more efficient means for DCED to e-mail signage to vendors, and for vendors to print and post signage on their own. This change will reduce the current fiscal note considerably. 1:39:30 PM SENATOR HUGHES asked what "indefinite suspension of license after three convictions" means in practice. MR. LAMKIN suggested the department speak to that, but he believes there would be no good-faith remedy after three convictions. 1:40:34 PM ANGELA BIRT, Chief Investigator, Division of Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing, Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development (DCCED), explained that a business or person could resume selling tobacco products if both DCCED and the Department of Health and Social Services were satisfied that appropriate training and constraints were in place to prevent the sale of tobacco or nicotine products to children. CHAIR COSTELLO asked the department to put that in writing, so it could follow the bill through the process. SENATOR HUGHES commented that three occurrences over 30 years is very different than three occurrences over just a few years so it's appropriate to have a path back to good standing. MR. LAMKIN pointed out that the bill stipulates three occurrences within two years. SENATOR GARDNER asked if the department wanted the penalties in Section 14 to apply to all tobacco sales and if the bill is a vehicle for that. MR. LAMKIN said that is his understanding but the department should speak to that directly. 1:43:22 PM MS. BIRT confirmed that the department asked for the change to update the fine structure and support the cost of running the program. SENATOR HUGHES asked if the bill only requires these products to be behind the counter and out of reach, not out of a child's sight. MR. LAMKIN answered that's correct. SENATOR HUGHES suggested that should be addressed at some point in the future. She asked if the sponsor would consider requiring the products to be out of sight rather than just incidentally behind the counter. MR. LAMKIN said that has been brought to the sponsor's attention and the idea will be vetted. CHAIR COSTELLO removed her objection and found no further objection; therefore, version R was adopted. 1:48:10 PM SENATOR HUGHES moved to report the CS for SB 15 from committee with individual recommendations and attached fiscal note(s). CHAIR COSTELLO announced that without objection, CSSB 15(L&C) is reported from the Senate Labor and Commerce Standing Committee.