An Update on 19 State-Level Tobacco Legislation Bills

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Hawaii: House Bill 1570, which, effective July 1, 2060, bans the sale of flavored tobacco and synthetic nicotine products; prohibits marketing electronic smoking devices to appeal to underage persons; and defines heated smoking products as electronic smoking devices, passed House Consumer Protection & Commerce Committee on Feb. 24, 2022.

Idaho: Senate Bill 1285, which prohibits any locality from enacting ordinances regulating the marketing or sale of tobacco or vapor products and also prohibits localities from imposing additional taxes or fees on tobacco products or vapor products, was amended in the Senate on March 2, 2022.

Indiana: Senate Bill 382, which currently includes a tax on alternative nicotine products, as defined, at $0.40 per ounce; a tax on closed system cartridges at 15 percent of the wholesale price; a requirement that remote sellers, as defined, to be licensed and subject to tobacco taxes, passed the House and was sent to the Senate for concurrence on February 28th. The Conference Committee met on March 3, 2022.

Maine: LD 1693/HP1258, which bans flavored products (including menthol), doubles the cigarette tax to $4 per pack and increases OTP taxes by 100 percent, was voted on, resulting in a “divided report” in the Joint Committee on Health and Human Services on March 2, 2022.

Maryland: House Bill 477, which authorizes a county or municipality to enact and enforce local laws to regulate the sale and distribution of cigarettes, other tobacco products and electronic smoking devices (excludes taxes and issuance of licenses), will be heard in the House Economic Matters Committee on March 9, 2022. House Bill 1227, which adds synthetic nicotine to the definition of tobacco products, was withdrawn from further consideration on March 1, 2022.

New Hampshire: Senate Bill 314, which reduces the state excise tax on modified risk tobacco products, was referred for interim study by the Senate on Feb. 24, 2022.

Utah: Senate Bill 130, which exempts e-cigarette products receiving FDA marketing authorization from nicotine content limitations, died by rule on March 1, 2022.

Virginia: Senate Bill 748 (same as HB1199), which addresses remote sellers regarding taxation, licensing and record keeping; would lower OTP tax rates, passed the House on February 24 and was enrolled in the Senate on Feb. 28, 2022 (eligible for the Governor’s desk). House Bill 1199 (same as SB748) passed the Senate on March 2, 2022. House Bill 1076 (similar to SB25), which requires any locality that increases its tax rate on cigarettes to allow a person with unsold inventory to pay the tax increase on the unsold inventory by filing a return for one calendar year after the tax increase; defines “unsold inventory” for the purposes of this provision to mean cigarettes held prior to the tax rate increase, passed the Senate on Feb. 24 and enrolled in the House on Feb. 28, 2022. Senate Bill 25 (like HB1076), received Senate concurrence on March 2, 2022.

For all the latest news from the National Association of Tobacco Outlets (NATO), visit natocentral.org.