News: Gardena, CA Bans Sale of Single Cigars
According to a report from DailyBreeze.com, the City Council of Gardena, CA passed a piece of legislation at their meeting on Tuesday that bansned the sale of single cigars in the city. However, the specific effects on brick-and-mortar tobacconists remains somewhat cloudy.
The bill bans the sale of single cigars and cigarillos at stores that are not “significant tobacco retailers,” a provision that would seem to exempt traditional cigar stores. As tweeted by the IPCPR on Tuesday:
News of the proposed ban came out on Monday, and in quotes contained in an article in the San Jose Mercury News, there were conflicting opinions on the effect of the ban. As Charlie reported, Councilman Dan Medina, the person who introduced the proposal, is quoted in the article only discussing the effects of cigarillos. The article notes that Gardena imposed additional local taxes on merchants to help pay for a variety of anti-tobacco measures including inspections and police stings.
On the other side of the argument was Gardena police lieutenant Mike Saffell, who questioned the prevalence of underage smoking when it comes to premium cigars:
Single-sold cigars enable youth to engage in that type of activity. Commonly they will remove the tobacco and put marijuana in its place… Someone who’s going to smoke marijuana is more apt to buy a 10-cent cigarette as opposed to someone who smokes cigarettes and is buying a package or carton.
The ban is the latest in a series of battles over tobacco that have occurred in California this year, including the defeat of Prop. 29 and the introduction of California Senate Bill 575, which would have removed the exemption for indoor smoking in numerous venues. That bill was held in committee without recommendation and will not make it to the Senate floor this session.