FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Chief Skyler Genest
Director, Office of Compliance and Enforcement
Tobacco Compliance Results 6 Months Post Tobacco 21 Law
MONTPELIER, VT – February 19th, 2020. The Office of Compliance and Enforcement (OCE) of the Vermont Department of Liquor and Lottery has seen a significant increase in compliance with the laws preventing sales of tobacco products to underage individuals.
Act 27 of the 2019 Legislative Session became Effective September 1, 2019. Since then, the legal age for possessing and purchasing tobacco products, tobacco substitutes (which includes e-cigarettes), and tobacco paraphernalia in the State of Vermont increased from 18 to 21.
OCE conducts underage compliance checks on all licensees that sell tobacco products and substitutes on a consistent basis. Since September 1, 2019, 469 tobacco licenses have been subjected to a tobacco compliance check. Of those 469 checks, only 24 sold tobacco products or substitutes to underage individual, resulting in a compliance rate of 95.13%. During that same 6-month period in 2017 and 2018, the compliance rates were 90.89% and 91.44% respectively.
Based on this nearly 5-point jump in compliance percentages, OCE believes that the passage of Act 27 has resulted in fewer tobacco products being sold directly to underage persons at licensed establishments in Vermont.
The Department of Liquor and Lottery wishes to thank our responsible retailers for their commitment to reducing underage access to tobacco and alcohol products.
About the Vermont Department of Liquor and Lottery, Division of Liquor Control (DLC)
The mission of the Vermont Department of Liquor and Lottery, Division of Liquor Control is to serve the public by encouraging responsible consumption and preventing the misuse of beverage alcohol and tobacco through the controlled distribution, education and licensing of sellers, and compliance and enforcement. The Department works to provide excellent customer service in conjunction with our Agency Partners to operate efficient, convenient, and profitable liquor stores. All profits from the DLC’s operations are contributed to the State of Vermont’s General Fund with over $300,000,000 being contributed since 2000.