STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1017
RE: S.B. No. 1244
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred S.B. No. 1244, S.D. 1, entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO THE SALE OF TOBACCO PRODUCTS,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to clarify that liability for illegally selling tobacco products and electronic smoking devices to persons under twenty-one years of age is borne by the retail entity, entity that holds a retail tobacco permit, or entity registered to sell electronic smoking devices, as opposed to an employee.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Department of Health, Blue Zones Project-Hawaii, Hawaii COPD Coalition, Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawai‘i, and three individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from Retail Merchants of Hawai‘i, Hawaii Smokers Alliance, and eleven individuals.
Your Committee finds that under existing law, any person who sells tobacco products or electronic smoking devices to persons under twenty-one years of age in violation of section 712-1258, Hawaii Revised Statutes, shall be fined. Currently, it is unclear whether the retailer, tobacco product permittee, electronic smoking device registration holder, or the employee who unlawfully sold the tobacco products and electronic smoking devices is responsible for the fine. Your Committee further finds that making retailers, tobacco product permittees, and electronic smoking device registration holders liable for the actions of their employees in conducting unlawful sales to minors provides an incentive for retailers, tobacco product permittees, and electronic smoking device registration holders to comply with tobacco sales laws. This measure clarifies that penalties shall not be imposed on employees but on retailers, tobacco product permittees, and electronic smoking device registration holders as they are best placed to ensure that Hawaii's tobacco sales are being upheld at the point of sale.
Your Committee has amended this measure by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1244, S.D. 1, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Third Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1244, S.D. 2.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
KARL RHOADS, Chair