HB 1006 – Regulation of Tobacco Products
Authored by Rep. Cindy Kirchhofer (R-Beech Grove)

Requires a person to be at least 21 years of age to purchase tobacco products or to hold a tobacco sales certificate to sell tobacco products. Requires a seller of tobacco products to verify the age of a purchaser who appears to be less than 30 years of age (instead of 27 years of age) by checking a government issued identification. Imposes various penalties for retailers selling products to individuals under 21, as well as a $50 fine for those who buy products for someone under the age of 21.

Chamber position: Support

The latest: The bill was amended on second reading in the House to include a provision whereby a person who knowingly sells a tobacco product that contains Vitamin E acetate commits a Level 6 Class B infraction (a $1,000 fine). The bill now moves to third reading for a full House vote next week.

Indiana Chamber action/commentary: Vitamin E acetate is the substance that has been associated with lung problems of those using vaping products; thus, the Chamber supports this measure.

SB 1 – Tobacco and Vaping Smoking Age
Authored by Sen. Ed Charbonneau (R-Valparaiso)

Prohibits a person who is less than 21 years of age from buying or possessing: (1) cigarettes; (2) tobacco products; (3) e-liquids; or (4) electronic cigarettes. Makes conforming changes regarding enforcement provisions, sales certificates, prohibition of delivery sales and notices posted at retail establishments and at vending machines. Provides that a retail establishment that sells an e-liquid to a person less than 21 years of age is subject to a civil judgment for an infraction. Triples the civil judgment for an infraction for a retail establishment that sells or distributes tobacco or an electronic cigarette to a person less than 21 years of age.

Chamber position: Support

The latest: The bill passed the Senate Health and Provider Services Committee 11-0; it is on the fast track and is expected to pass the Senate with little opposition.

Indiana Chamber action/commentary:  The Senate version has stiffer penalties on retail establishments that sell tobacco to those under the legal age than the House version. Nine organizations testified in favor of the bill. The Indiana Chamber has been a strong advocate for the issue over several sessions. Our president and CEO Kevin Brinegar testified concerning the impact on our youth and our future workforce, and the financial impacts on businesses.

Resource: Mike Ripley at (317) 264-6883 or email: [email protected]