Agenda Item 7C
November 17,2015
Action
MEMORANDUM
November 13,2015
TO:
FROM:
County Council
Robert
H.
Drummer, Senior Legislative Attorney
~
SUBJECT:
Action: Bill 41-15, Health - Distribution of Tobacco Products to Minors -
Penalties
I
Health and Human Sen'ices Committee recommendation (3-0): enact the Bill as introduced.
Bill 41-15, Health - Distribution of Tobacco Products to Minors - Penalties, sponsored by
Lead Sponsor Councilmember Rice and Co-Sponsors Council President Leventhal, Council Vice
President Floreen, and Councilmembers Eirich, Navarro, Hucker, Katz, Riemer, and Berliner was
introduced on September 29, 2015. A public hearing was held on October 20 and a Health and
Human Services Committee worksession was held on November 5.
Background
Distributing a tobacco product to a minor already violates County law. The current
maximum penalty is a Class A civil violation, punishable by a fme of $500 for a first offense and
$750 for a subsequent offense. Md. Local Gov't Code, §10-202(b) authorizes the County to
enforce a County law by a civil fine not exceeding $1000. Bill 41-15 would increase the maximum
civil fine for distributing a tobacco product to a minor to $1000 for a first offense and $1000 for a
subsequent offense.
Distributing a tobacco product to a minor is also a misdemeanor under Md. Criminal Law
Code, § 10-107, punishable by a fine of $300 for a first offense, $1000 for a second offense, and
$3000 for each subsequent offense within 2 years after the preceding offense.
An
enforcement
official would have the option of citing a violator under the State Criminal Law or under the
County law.
The County Attorney's Office issued a bill review memorandum raising a potential State
implied preemption issue for the existing County law prohibiting the distribution of tobacco, but
ultimately concluded that the Bill is probably not preempted by State law. See ©5-7. Council
staff agrees with this conclusion.
Public Hearing
There were no speakers at the October 20 public hearing.
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
November 5 HHS Worksession
Dr. Ulder Tillman, Health Officer, and Clark Beil, Department of Health and Human
Services, Licensure and Regulatory Services, represented the Executive branch. Josh Hamlin,
Legislative Attorney represented Council staff.
The Committee discussed the Bill and recommended its approval (3-0). The Committee
also directed Council staff to draft a Board of Health Regulation and work with the Council
President on scheduling its consideration and adoption, so that the provisions of the Bill will apply
in all municipalities in the County.
Issues
1.
What is the fiscal and economic impact of the Bill?
OMB estimated that the Bill would increase revenue from fines from $21,000 per year to
$42,000 per year. Finance estimated that the Bill would not have a significant economic impact.
See ©11-14.
2. Would the Bill apply in all municipalities?
Section 24-9C, Distribution of Tobacco Products to Minors, was first enacted in
Emergency Bill 13-98 on June 30, 1998.
In
order to ensure that the Bill would apply in each
municipality in the County, the Council, acting as the County Board of Health, adopted the law as
a Board of Health Regulation. A copy of Resolution No. 13-1410, adopting the Bill as a Health
Regulation, is at ©8-1O. This resolution adopts Bill 13-98 as it was enacted in 1998. Therefore,
the higher fine that would be established by Bill41-15 may not apply in each municipality unless
the Council later adopts Bill4l-15 as a Board of Health Regulation.
Md. Code, Health-General
Art.
§3-202 authorizes the Council, sitting as the County Board
of Health, to adopt health regulations applicable in each municipality in the County. County Code
§2-65 implements this authority:
Sec. 2-65. Board of health designated.
(a) The County Council is, and may act as, the County Board of Health.
(b) When meeting as the Board of Health, the County Council has all the
powers delegated to a local board of health under State and County law.
(c) The County Council, meeting as the Board of Health, may adopt any
regulation which a local board of health is authorized to adopt.
Before it
adopts a regulation, the Board must hold a public hearing after giving
reasonable notice, as specified in the Council Rules ofProcedure, to each
municipality in the County and the public.
(emphasis added)
If the Council wants to ensure that the increased fines are applicable in each municipality,
the Council could follow enactment of this Bill with a Board of Health Regulation adopted after
notice to each municipality and the public. Committee recommendation (3-0): enact the Bill as
introduced and adopt it as a health regulation to make it applicable in all municipalities.
2
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
This packet contains:
Bill 41-15
Legislative Request Report
County Attorney Bill Review Memorandum
Resolution No. 13-1410
Fiscal and Economic Impact Statement
F:\LAW\BILLS\1541 Distributing Tobacco To Minor\Action Memo.Docx
Circle
#
I
4
5
8
11
3
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Bill No.
41-15
Concerning: Health - Distribution of
Tobacco Products to Minors ­
Penalties
Revised: 10-20-15
Draft No. 5
Introduced:
September 29. 2015
March 29. 2017
Expires:
Enacted: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Executive: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Effective: _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ __
Sunset Date:
-!..!.No:::.!n.!!:e~
_ _ _ _ __
Ch. _ _ Laws of Mont. Co. _ __
I
COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
Lead Sponsor: Councilmember Rice
Co-Sponsors: Council President Leventhal, Council Vice President Floreen, and Councilmembers
EIrich, Navarro, Hucker, Katz, Riemer, and Berliner
AN
ACT to:
(1)
(2)
increase the maximum civil fine for distributing a tobacco product to a minor; and
generally amend the law prohibiting the distribution of a tobacco product to a minor.
By amending
Montgomery County Code
Chapter 24, Health and Sanitation
Section 24-11
Boldface
Underlining
[Single boldface brackets]
Double underlining
[[Double boldface brackets]]
* * *
Heading or defined term.
Added to existing law by original bill.
Deletedfrom existing law by original bill.
Added by amendment.
Deletedfrom existing law or the bill by amendment.
Existing law unaffected by bill.
The County Council for Montgomery County, Maryland approves the following Act.'
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
BILL
No.
41-15
1
Sec. 1. Section 24-11 is amended as follows:
24-11. Distribution of tobacco products to minors.
(a)
Defmitions.
In
this Section the following words have the meanings
indicated.
(1)
Tobacco product means any substance containing tobacco,
including cigarettes, cigars, smoking tobacco, snuff, or smokeless
tobacco.
.(2)
Distribute means to:
(A) give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or issue;
(B) offer to give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or issue; or
(C) cause or hire any person to give away, sell, deliver,
dispense, or· issue or offer to give away, sell, deliver,
dispense, or issue.
(b) Unlawful distribution.
(1 )
A person engaged m the business of selling or otherwise
distributing tobacco products for commercial purposes must not:
(i)
distribute any tobacco product to a minor, unless the minor
is acting solely as the agent of the minor's employer who
is engaged in the business of distributing tobacco products;
(ii) distribute cigarette rolling papers to a minor; or
(iii) distribute to a minor a coupon redeemable for any tobacco
product.
(2)
A person, who is not a person described under paragraph (b)( 1),
must not:
(i)
buy for or sell to a minor any tobacco product; or
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
(ii) deliver or sell to a minor cigarette rolling papers.
G)
f:\Iaw\bills\1541 distributing tobacco to minor\billS.docx
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
BILL
No.
41-15
27
(
c)
Subsection (b) does not apply to the distribution of a coupon which is
redeemable for any tobacco product when the coupon is contained
in
a
newspaper, a magazine, or any other type of publication in which the
coupon is incidental to the primary purpose of the publication, or sent
through the mail.
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
(d)
A person has not violated this Section if:
(1)
that person examined a driver's license or another valid
identification issued by an employer, a government entity, or an
institution ofhigher education; and
(2)
that license or other identification positively identified the buyer
or recipient of a tobacco product as at least 18 years old.
37
38
39
40
(e)
If a minor bought a tobacco product from a vending machine, this
Section does not apply to the owner of the vending machine or any
other person with control over the vending machine.
41
42
43
(f)
A person who violates this Section is liable for a [class A] civil
violation. The maximum civil fine is $1000 for
$1000 for each subsequent offense.
~
first offense and
44
45
Approved:
George Leventhal, President, County Council
46
Approved:
Date
47
Isiah Leggett, COlUlty Executive
Date
f:\law\bills\1541 distributing tobacco to minor\biIl5.docx
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
LEGISLATIVE REQUEST REPORT
Bi1141-15
Health
DESCRIPTION:
Distribution ofTobacco Products to Minors
Penalties
Bill 41-15 would increase the civil fine for a violation of County law from $500 for a
first offense and $750 for a subsequent offense to $1000 for each offense.
The penalties under County law are too low.
Eliminate the distribution of tobacco products to minors in the County.
PROBLEM:
GOALS AND
OBJECTIVES:
COORDINATION:
Police, Department of Liquor Control
FISCAL IMPACT:
To be determined.
ECONOMIC
IMPACT:
EVALUATION:
EXPERIENCE
ELSEWHERE:
SOURCE OF
INFORMATION:
To be determined.
nla
To be researched.
Robert H. Drummer, Senior Legislative Attorney
APPLICATION
WITIllN
MUNICIPALITIES:
To be researched.
PENALTIES:
$1000 for each offense.
F:\LAW\BILLS\1541 Distributing Tobacco To Minor\LRR.Docx
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
.!
!
.:,
Isiah Leggett
County Executive
MarcP.
Hansen
County Attorney
OFFICE OF THE COUNTY ATIORNEY
·MEMORANDUM
TO:
FROM:
VIA:
Uma Ahluwalia. Director, DHHS
Kristen
Kalaria.
Assistant County Attorney, OCA
r..
~
B'j!­
Edward Lattner, Chief, Division of Government Opemtions, OCA
October 12, 2015
713
;t­
DATE:
RE:
Summary
Bill 41-15 Distribution of Tobacco Products
to
Minors - Penalties CORRECTED
Bill 41-15 raises the maximum civil fine for distributing a tobacco product to a minor
in
violation of County Code
§
24-11 from $300 to $1000. As described
in
further detail below, the
proposed amendment does not raise any legal issues. While a court could find that
§
24-11 itself
is preempted because the Court ofAppeals recently concluded that "state law comprehensively
regulates the packaging, sale, and distribution oftobacco products, including cigars, and thus
preempts this field," we believe, on balance,
that
§
24-11 is probably not preempted.
Clarity
Bill 41-15
is
clear.
Liability Exposure
Bil141-15 does not expand the County's exposure to liability, except as noted below
under "Preemption."
Constitutionality
As tobacco is heavily regulated by the state and federal governments, it
is
necessary to
consider the possibility that local regulation
in
the area may be preempted. Preemption
may
be
either express or implied. Neither the state nor federal government expressly prohibits local
regulation of tobacco sales. Implied preemption, however, is a significant concern. Preemption
will be implied where the state or federal government
has
regulated a field so forcibly that its
101
Monroe
Street, Rockville, Maryland 20850·2540
(240) 777..fJ700. TID (240) 777·2545. FAX (240) 777·6705
5
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
·[
,"
':
1"':·:""":-"
. '!
I
:~.
Uma Ahluwalia
October 12,2015
Page 2
intent to occupy the entire field must be inferred.
Mayor and City Council ofBaltimore
v.
Sitnick,
254 Md. 303,323 (1969). As described below, it is unlikely that a court would find that
Bi1141-15, and the underlying Section 24-11, is preempted by state law.
Section
24-11
is Not Preempted
by
Federal Law
Federal law prohibits sale ofcigarettes to persons under 18 and requires retailers to check
photo identification for persons under the age of26. 21 C.F.R. 1140.14. According to the Food
and Drug Administration's most recent guidance document for retailers, the penalty for violation
ofPart 1140.14 varies based on the number of violations within a four year period. The penalty
could range from a warning letter for the
first
violation to $11,000 for six or more violations
within four years. Preemption by federal law is not a concern. The Supreme Court bas held
that
federal law does not preempt local regulation of tobacco sales to minors.
Lorillard Tobacco
v.
Reilly,
533 U.S. 525, 552 (2001).
Section
24-11
Is Probably Not Preempted by State Law
State law also prohibits the sale of cigarettes to minors. The state prohibition is found in
§ 10-107 of the Criminal Law Article, Maryland Code. Section 10-107 is almost identical to the
existing county law,
§
24-11 ofthe County Code. Like § 24-11,
§
10-107 prohibits distribution
of tobacco products, paraphernalia, or coupons redeemable for tobacco products to minors. Both
sections also prohibit other individuals from buying tobacco products on behalf ofminors. The
laws differ only regarding the penalties: the state law provides penalties not exceeding $300 for a
first offense, $1000 for a second offense within two years, and $2000 for a third offense within
two years. The existing county law is punishable by a fine not exceeding $500 for a first offense
and $750 for a subsequent offense. Bill 41-15 would increase the fine to $1000 for a first offense
and $1000 for each subsequent offense. A separate provision prohibits possession or use of
tobacco products by a minor. Md. Code Criminal Law
§10-108
The Court ofAppeals recently struck down a Prince George's County ordinance
requiring cigars to be sold in packages ofat least five, finding that the ordinance was preempted
by extensive State regulation in the field.
Altadis U.S.A. Inc.
v.
Prince George's County,
431 Md.
307,309 (2013). The Court specifically held that "state law comprehensively regulates the
packaging, sale, and distribution of tobacco products, including cigars, and thus preempts this
field."
Altadis
at 316. This is not the first time the Court bas s1ruck down a local tobacco
regulation on the basis ofpreemption.
In
Allied Vendingv. City ofBowie,
332 Md. 279 (1993),
the Court invalidated two municipal ordinances restricting the placement of state-licensed
cigarette vending machines
in
an effort to make tliem less accessible to minors. The Court held
that the comprehensive state regulation "manifested an intent for the state to completely occupy
the field of the sale of cigarettes through vending machines."
Allied Vending
at
310.
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
· .. !
j.':
Uma Ahluwalia
October 12,2015
Page 3
But it is possible to draw some distinctions between
§
24-11 and the ordinances
invalidated by
Altadis
and
Allied Vending.
Both cases relied primarily on the comprehensive
state regulation oftobacco retailers found in Titles 16 and 16.5 of the Business Regulations
Article, Maryland Code.
In
contrst, the sale of cigarettes to minors is regulated in the Criminal
Law Article. Thus, it could be argued that this provision is not part of the comprehensive civil
regulatory scheme considered by
Altadis.
Also, because the county law differs from the state law
only in penalties assessed, one could argue that there is no potential for confusion
if
different
municipalities have different penalties because the prohibited acts are still identical. The
potential for confusion created by different municipal requirements
was
one of the concerns cited
by the court in
Allied Vending.
In
addition, after the County enacted
§
24-11
in
1998, the General Assembly amended
§
10-107
(Laws
ofMaryland 2007, Ch. 218), and it did not disapprove or even make any
reference to the preexisting County law. The Maryland Court of Appeals
has
previously
concluded that the General Assembly does not intend to impliedly preempt a field containing
preexisting local legislation and the General Assembly takes no action to "oust"
that
preexisting
local legislation.
National Asphalt v. Prince George's County,
292 Md. 75,79,437 A.2d 651,
653 n.4 (1981).
In
such cases, the General Assembly is charged
with
knowledge of the
preexisting 10ca1law and is said to have acquiesced
to
the presence of local legislation
in
the
field.
I
Other
issues
Section 24-11 does not apply to e-cigarettes. This is not a problem, but the Council may
consider amending
§
24-11 to include e-cigarettes, as it recently expanded Section 24-9 (the
smoking ban) to do the same. lfyou have any concerns or questions concerning
this
memorandum please call me.
cc:
Bonnie Kirkland, Assistant CAO
Robert
H. Drummer, Senior Legislative Attorney
Marc P. Hansen, County Attorney
The Fourth Circuit concluded
that
§ 10-107, then codified at Md. Ann. Code
art.
27,
§§
404
&
405, did
not
impliedly
preempt a Baltimore City
law
prohibiting cigarette advertising on billboards located in designated
zones.
Penn Adver.
of
Baltimore, Inc.
v.
Mayor
&:
City Council ofBaltimore,
63 F.3d 1318, 1324, 1995 WL 530257
(4th Cir. 1995)
cert.
granted,
judgment vacated sub nom. Penn Adver. ofBaltimore, Inc.
v.
Schmoke,
518 U.s. 1030,
116 S. CL 2575, 135 L.
Ed.
2d 1090 (1996) and
adopted as modified.
101 F.3d 332 (4th Cir. 1996),
I
(j)
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Resolution No.:
13-1410
Introduced:
July 28, 1998
Adopted:
August 4, 1998
COUNTY COUNCIL
FOR MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND
By: County Council
Subject: Adoption of Emergency Bi1l13-98, Tobacco - Distribution to Minors, as a Board of
Health Regulation
Background
1.
On June 30, 1998, the County Council enacted Emergency Bi1l13-98, Tobacco ­
Distribution to Minors. The bill added Section 24-9C, Distribution of Tobacco Products
to Minors, to Chapter 24, Health and Sanitation of the Montgomery County Code.
Maryland Health-General Code §3-202(d) authorizes the Board of Health to adopt rules
and regulations regarding any nuisance or cause ofdisease in the County.
The Board of Health fmds that prohibiting the distribution of tobacco products to minors
is necessary to protect the public health and safety in the County.
Action
The County Council for Montgomery County, Maryland, sitting as the Board ofHealth
for Montgomery County, approves the following resolution:
Montgomery County Code Section 24-9C, Distribution of Tobacco
Products to Minors, as enacted in Emergency Bill 13-98, is
adopted as a Board ofHealth regulation. A copy of Section 24-9C
is attached.
2.
3.
This is a correct copy of Council action.
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Attachment to Resolution No. 13-1410
..
",,,'
24-9C. Distribution of Tobacco Products to Minors.
W
Definitions. In this Section the following words have the meanings indicated.
ill
Tobacco product means any substance containing tobacco, including
cigarettes, cigars, smoking tobacco, snuff, or smokeless tobacco.
ill
Distribute means to:
CA)
give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or issue:
offer to give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or issue; or
cause or hire any person to give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or
issue or offer to give away, sell, deliver, dispense, or issue.
au
(Q
fhl
Unlawful distribution.
ill
A person engaged in the business of selling or otherwise distributing
tobacco products for commercial purposes must not:
ill
distribute any tobacco product to
~
minor, unless the minor is
acting solely as the agent of the minor's employer who is engaged
in the business of distributing tobacco products:
(ill
(iii)
distribute cigarette rolling papers to
~
minor: or
distribute to
~
minor
~
coupon redeemable for any tobacco
product.
ill '
A person, who is not
~
person described under paragraph
(b)(1),
must not:
ill
buy for or sell to
~
minor any tobacco product; or
(ill
deliver or sell to
~
minor cigarette rolling papers.
W
Subsection
fhl
does not
f!.PPly
to the distribution of
~
coupon which is
redeemable for any tobacco product when the coupon is contained in
~
newspaper,
~
magazine, or any other
~
of publication in which the coupon is
incidental to the primary purpose of the publication, or sent through the maiL
@
A person has not violated this Section if:
ill
that person examined
~
driver's license or another valid identification
issued
Qy
an employer,
education; and
~
government entity, or an institution of higher
ill
that license or other identification positively identified the buyer or
recipient of
~
tobacco product as at least
l8.
years old.
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Attachment to Resolution No. 13-1410
ill
If
.e
minor bought
.e
tobacco prOduct
from
.e
vending machine, this Section does
not
illmlY
to the owner of the vending machine or
any
other person with control
over the vending machine.
A person who violates this Section is liable for
.e
class A civil violation.
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
ROCKVILLE~
MARYLAND
MEMORANDUM
November 3, 2015
TO:
FROM:
SUBJECT:
George Leventhal, President, County Council
Jennifer
A.
Hughes, Director, Office of Management and Budget
Joseph F. Beach. Director, Department of Finance
FEIS for Bill 41
~
15, Health
~
Distribution ofTobacco
to
Minors ­ Penalties
Please find attached the fiscal and economic impact'starements for the above­
referenced legislation.
JAH:fz
cc:
Hormie
Kirkland,
Assistant Chief Administrative Officer
Lisa Austin, Offices ofthe County Executive
Joy
Nurmi,
Special A$sistant to the
County
Executive
Patrick Lacefield, Director, Public Information Office
Joseph F. Beach, Director, Department ofFinance
Uma Ahluwalia. Director, Department ofHumal1 Health Services
Alex Espinosa, Office of Management and Budget
Rachel Silberman, Office of
Management and Budget
Felicia Zhang, Office of Management and Budget
Naeem Mia. Office ofManagement and Budget
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Fiscal Impact Statement
CouncillJID 41..15 Health,
Distribution of Tobacco to Minors - Penalties
1.
Legislative Summary.
Bill 41-15 would increase the maximum penalty fur distributing a tobacco product to a
minor from $500 for
a
first offense and $750 for
a
subsequent offense
to
$1,000 for
a
first
offense and $1,000 for
a
subsequent offense.
2.
An
estimate ofchanges in County revenues and expenditures regardless of whether the
revenues or expenditures are assumed in the recommended or approved budget. Includes
source of information, assumptions, and methodologies used.
Bill 41-15
is
not expected to change County expenditures. The County currently
cOl1ducts tobacco compliance inspections and collects fmes. Between FY09 and FY15.
the Montgomery County
Department
ofLiquor Control (DLC) conducted an average of
330 tobacco compliance inspections resulting
in
73 violations on average, However. the
number ofinspections and violations
has
steadily declined since FY09 from 559 and 117
respectively. to 350 and 49
in
FY15. Revenues are expected
to
double: $21,600
Was
collected by
the
County Attorney's Office in
FY15, which would
increase to $42,000
under Bill 41-15.
3.
Revenue and
expenditure
estimates covering at least the next 6 fiscal
years.
Bill 41-15
is
not expected to change County expenditures.
Assuming
the number of
violations remains constant, revenue collected from citations issued for tobacco sales
to
minors would remain steady at $42,000
per
year (a $20,400 increase over FY15 citation
collections),
with
an
estimated six year total of $252.000.
4. An actuarial analysis through
the
entire amortization period for each bill
that
would affect
retiree pension or group insurance costs.
Not
applicable.
5.
An
estimate of
expenditures related
to
County's information technology (IT) systems,
including Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems.
6.
Later actions
that
may
affect future revenue and expenditures
if
the bill authorizes future
spending.
Not applicable, Bill 41-15 does not authorize future spending.
7.
An estimate of
me
staff time needed to implement the bill.
@
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
No additional staff time is required to impleQlent
the
bilL The County
cUlTently
conducts
tobacco compliance
inspections
and fme collection.
8.
An
explanation of
how the
addition
ofnew staff
responsibilities
would
affect
other duties.
Not applicable.
9. An estimate of
costs when
an
additional appropriation is needed.
Not applicable.
10. A description of
any
variable that could
affect
revenue and cost estimates.
The
variables that
could affect
revenues
are the number
of
locations inspected by
I>LC,
the
number
of violations, and
the
compliance rate.
Because
ofthe constant number of
locations inspected, the high
compliance
rate, and
the
low munher ofviola.tions
in
FY15,
it
is assumed that revenues
\vill
not
increase significa:ntly beyond
those
estimated in #2 of
this
fiscal
impact.
The hill does not
affect
cost estimates.
11. Ranges
of
revenue or expenditures
that
are uncertain
Qrdifficult
to
project
Not applicable.
12. If a bill is likely to have no fiscal
impact..
why that is the case.
Not applicable.
13.
Other
fiscal impacts or
comments.
14.
The
foUo\\<ing contributed
to
and
concurred
with
this analysis:
Rachel
Sil~
OMB
Date ")
@
 PDF to HTML - Convert PDF files to HTML files
Economic Impaet Statement
Bill 41-15, Health - Dis.tribution of
Tobacco to
Minors -
Penalties
Background:
The distribution of tobacco products to minors violates County law. This legislation would
increase the maximum civil fine for distributing tobacco products to a minor from $500 for the
first offense and $750 for a subsequent offense to $1,000 for the
fir&t
offense and to $1,000
for
a
subsequent offense.
1. The sources of infonnation, assumptions, and methodologies used.
Source ofinfonnation: Montgomery County Department of Liquor Control (DLC). DLC.is
responsible for conducting tobacco compliance inspections. Between FY09 and FYI 5, there
were an average of
T3
violations at an average of330 locations. Since f'Y09
t
the number of
violations has steadily declined from 117 in FY09 to 49 in FY15. Of the number of inspections
at vruious retail stores, there was an average of a 78 percent c{)mpliance rate with State law under
Md. Criminal
Law
Code
§]
0-1 07 and a maximum compliance rate of 86 percent in FY15. In
FYI 5." the County Attomey's office collected $21
~600
in
fines.
2. A description of any variable that could affeet the
econo.mic impact
estimates.
The variables that could affect the economiciinpa<;:t estimates are the
number
of locations
inspected by DLC, the number
of
violations, and me complianc.e rate. Because of the constant
number oflocations inspected. the high compliance rate, and the low number of violations in
FY15, Finance assumes that those figures v,i.ll not change in estimating the economic impact
under Bill 41-15.
3. The Bill's positive or negative effect
if
any on employment,
spe~ding,
savings,
investment, incomes, and property values in the County.
Based
on
the assumptions in paragraph #2 and
the
itlcrease in the fine from $500 to $1
~OOO
for
the first offense, the amount of collections by the County Attorney would double from $21,000
to
$42~000,
This would represenfa loss of business income to retail stores. However, because of
the low atnount ofloss
to
business
income
compared to the
total
amount
oftom.l proprietor's
income.in the County - $90.8 million in calendar year 201 3 (Source: Bureau of Economic
Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce) - the economic impact of Bill 41-15 is insignitlcant.
4.
.If
a Bill is
likely to have no
economic impact, wbyis
that
the case?
Bill 41-15 would have no significant impact on total business income in the
C01.mty.
5. The
foUowlng contributed to or concurred
with this
analysis:
David
Platt,
Mary
Casciotti,
and Rob Hagedoorn, Finance .
.
~L.;(-
.
..
each, Director
ent of Finance
Page 1 of 1
Date