Published: December 2023

Status of the Ban on Menthol Cigarettes

In early December, the proposed federal ban on menthol cigarettes was delayed until March 2024. Those arguing against the proposed ban claimed it would unfairly target Black smokers, who disproportionately smoke menthols. The White House is planning to take more time to review the proposed ban.

On Dec. 28, 2023, the Oregon Court of Appeals issued an Order that temporarily halted Multnomah County’s enforcement of the new Flavored Tobacco Sales Ban, which was to have become effective on Jan. 1, 2024. For the present, licensed tobacco Retailers in Multnomah County can continue to legally sell flavored tobacco and nicotine

Read Tobacco Retail License Bulletin (PDF):

Tobacco-License-Retail-Bulletin-12-23.pdf

Published: MAY 2023

HB 3090 Forfeits Millions in Cigarette Tax Revenues while Youth Tobacco Use is at an All Time Low

House Bill 3090 proposes to eliminate the sale of any flavored tobacco product in Oregon. The bill is currently held in the Joint Committee on Ways & Means.

Proponents of the bill declare passage of the bill is aimed at reducing tobacco use by youth. However, the attached document illustrates the decline in Youth Tobacco Use during recent years.

Further, the attachment illustrates the estimated decline in tobacco tax revenue for the State, if HB 3090 is approved by the Legislature.

Current Estimates of the Revenue Impact of the Proposed Ban (PDF)

Published: MaRch 2023

Voters See Other Issues As Far More Important For The State To Focus On Than A Tobacco Flavor Ban

Voters in Oregon are clear in their belief that the state government should be prioritizing other issues over a ban on the sale of flavored tobacco products to adults 21 years or older. Just 17% want the state to prioritize a ban on flavored tobacco products, compared with a massive 80% who say other issues are more important. Not only is this 63-point margin significant, it is also bi-partisan, with a clear majority of Democrats, Independents, and Republicans encouraging the state to focus on other issues.

In fact, less than 1% say tobacco use is an important issue for leaders to be focused on. Instead of focusing on limiting products that are currently legal to adults (21+) in Oregon, voters would rather see state lawmakers prioritize the high cost of living in the state (57%) and homelessness (41%).

Read Full Survey Memo (PDF):

Full Survey Memo from Axis Research

Published: March 2022

Synthetic Nicotine Loophole to Close

New Federal legislation, signed into law by President Biden on March 15, 2022, has given the U.S. Food & Drug Administration regulatory authority over synthetic nicotine products, effectively closing the so-called “synthetic nicotine loophole.” This law becomes effective on April 15, 2022, and manufacturers will have until May 14, 2022 to either submit a Premarket Tobacco Product Application (PMTA) or stop marketing their products. Manufacturers that submit a PMTA by the deadline can continue marketing their products until July 13, 2022, after which time the products must be removed from retail, unless the FDA has issued a marketing granted order.

To avoid liability, retailers and distributors should act now to understand whether their manufacturers plan to submit a PMTA, and to be prepared to remove from their shelves any synthetic nicotine products that have not been the subject of a PMTA submitted by the May 14, 2022 deadline.

For More Information:

https://time.com/6156327/fda-synthetic-nicotine-regulation

https://www.natlawreview.com/article/fda-receives-authorization-to-regulate-synthetic-nicotine

https://truthinitiative.org/research-resources/emerging-tobacco-products/what-synthetic-nicotine-and-what-does-it-mean-youth

Published: June 2020

Mandatory Beverage Container Redemption Begins

Mandatory beverage container redemption begins two weeks past date your county enters Phase 1 of reopening.

As counties re-open, the OLCC will begin enforcing the requirement for retailers to accept empty beverage container returns and will link enforcement to the phase of a county. Specifically, two weeks after a coupty enters Phase 1 of the Governor’s plan to reopen Oregon, retailers in that county will be required to resume accepting empty beverage containers from customers. This includes accepting containers both through reverse vending machines and by hand count. The number of empty containers retailers are required to accept remains the same as prior to the non-enforcement, either 24, 50, or 144 containers per person per day.

While in Phase 1, stores may limit return hours from 8 AM to 6 PM except for 24-hour stores, which may limit their return hours from 7 AM to 11 PM. Two weeks after a county enters Phase 2, retailers in that county must extend their hours to accept returns from 8 AM to 8 PM except for 24-hour stores, which may continue to limit their return hours from 7 AM to 11 PM.

If a county moves back to the “baseline” phase, OLCC will again suspend enforcement until the county re-enters Phase 1.

Useful Links & Resources

Oregon Legislative Information System
For information about current and previous legislative sessions, bills, and committees
https://olis.oregonlegislature.gov/liz/2022R1

NACS – The Association for Convenience & Fuel Retailing
For national news, advocacy efforts, industry research, training and development for the convenience store industry
https://www.convenience.org

Oregon’s Bottle Bill
https://www.oregon.gov/OLCC/pages/bottle_bill.aspx

We Card Web Center
https://www.wecard.org
For signage and resource materials to assist with Under 21 compliance

Oregon Liquor Licensing
https://www.oregon.gov/olcc/lic/Pages/default.aspx
Applying for a license, educational materials, laws & regulations, and OLCC public meetings

Oregon’s Responsible Vendor Program
https://www.oregon.gov/olcc/lic/pages/responsible_vendor_program.aspx
Retail licensees who join the Responsible Vendor Program and maintain all of its requirements are eligible for reduced sanctions, should their employees in advertently sell alcohol to a minor or fail to properly check ID.

Oregon Bureau of Labor & Industries
https://www.oregon.gov/boli/employers/pages/default.aspx
Technical Assistance for Employers on employment law topics