PACT Act Passed by Senate Committee

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PACT Act Passed by Senate Committee

By Mehgan Belanger - 11/19/2009
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- With unanimous support, S. 1147, the Prevent All Cigarette Trafficking Act (PACT Act) was approved yesterday by the Senate Judiciary Committee, and will head to the full Senate.

If passed, the bill would prevent illegal untaxed cigarette trafficking and access to tobacco products by youth by prohibiting online and mail-order sales of tobacco. If the bill is signed into law, its regulations would go into effect 90 days following the enactment by the president, according to the version passed yesterday by the committee.

The PACT Act was passed in the House in May.

The Coalition to Stop Contraband Tobacco -- a group made up of several trade associations, public officials and a unit of a major tobacco company, among others -- gathered on Capitol Hill earlier this week to urge the committee to pass the legislation.

Some trade association members of the Coalition to Stop Contraband Tobacco include NACS, AWMA, FMI, NATO, NATSO, PMAA and SIGMA. Altria Client Services, a division of Altria Group, is also a member of the coalition on behalf of Philip Morris USA and U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co.

"At the very time when states have undertaken extraordinary efforts to restrict minors' access to cigarettes and continue to increase cigarette excise taxes, the Internet still offers minors a virtually risk-free and attractively priced means to easily obtain them," Hank Armour, president and CEO of NACS, said in a statement ahead of the committee's passage. "The PACT Act addresses long-standing concerns that law-abiding neighborhood convenience stores have with respect to tax evasion and underage sales."

Related News:

Senate Committee Urged to Pass PACT Act

NYACS Backs Senator's Push for Cigarette Tax Collection