Maryland Town Tightens Tobacco Regulations

Lawmakers in the Maryland town of Somerset are tightening restrictions on tobacco sales to minors by revoking business licenses after just two violations within a 24-month period, The Herald (Md.) News reported.

The town’s Board of Selectmen unanimously approved new regulations that call for a business to lose its license for three to 30 days if they violate tobacco-sales laws, regardless of whether a court decides if the business violated the laws, the newspaper reported.

The previous regulations called for businesses to lose their license if they violated the law three times in 24 months. Additionally, the Board of Selectmen can use their own set of standards to determine when the laws were violated, rather than the “reasonable doubt” standard used in criminal court cases.

The revamped regulations also forbid stores from selling tobacco to anyone 18 years old or younger, and it completely forbids the presence of cigarette machines in stores.

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