PACT Act Would Crackdown on Illegal Tobacco Sales

On Nov. 5 the Senate Judiciary Committee is set to vote on a bill called the Prevent All Cigarette Trafficking (PACT) Act that would get tough on the illegal sale of tobacco products that takes place through Internet and mail order, NACS reported.

The association has been leading a business coalition of retailers and distributors to show support for the legislation.

The Prevent All Cigarette Trafficking (PACT) Act (S. 1147) clears up loopholes in the current federal law regulating “remote” or “delivery” sales of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products. The PACT Act, which would help protect the legitimate channels of distribution for cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, has broad support as it balances the needs of law enforcement and interests of retailers and distributors.

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If approved, the PACT Act would require payment of state and local excise taxes on remote tobacco sales; regulates delivery methods, including age‐verification and shipping requirements; makes cigarettes and smokeless tobacco non-mailable to consumers through the U.S. Postal Service and gives the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives authority to inspect records and inventories of remote sellers.

On May 21, the House overwhelmingly passed its version of the PACT Act by a vote of 397-11.