What is in the law?

  1. Price Promotion Ban: Prohibits retailers from redeeming coupons or honoring other price discounts for tobacco products
  2. Floor Price: Sets the minimum price for cigarettes and little cigars at $10.50 per pack
  3. OTP Minimum Pack Size: Requires that cheap cigars and cigarillos be sold in packages of at least four, and little cigars be sold in packages of at least 20.
    • Cigars that cost more than $3 each are exempt from the packaging rule.
  4. Illicit Trade: Reduce the evasion of cigarette excise taxes and the selling of tobacco products without a license by increasing penalties
  5. Penalties: Gives authority to the Department of Finance to seal premises of tobacco sellers that have had repeated violations of the law

What does the research say?

  • According to the Federal Trade Commission Cigarette Report, in 2010 the tobacco industry spent $6,490,832 on price discounts at the point of sale– more money than they spend on any other form of tobacco promotion.
  • There is a proven association between tobacco promotions at the point of sale and smoking initiation [1].  Greater promotions also transition youth from experimentation to being an establish smoker.
  • Almost 70% of NYC tobacco retailers offer a price promotion at the time of purchase (NYC Health Department’s Vital Signs Report)
  • Price-sensitive groups (youth, low-income, ethnic minorities, women) are more likely to be effected by price discounts [2] and in NYC low and middle income neighborhoods have more interior and exterior price promotions. (NYC Health Department’s Vital Signs Report)
  • In Providence, RI a similar ban on industry coupons and price discounting was upheld by the U.S. District Court earlier this year
  • A flat minimum price law cuts out loopholes that can be exploited by the industry to keep prices low. Cigarette price increases greatly reduce the consequences of smoking by decreasing demand.
  • The sale of cigars has more than doubled since 2000, primarily due to small, cheap cigars that target youth. Young adults (18-24) and youth are much more likely to be cigar smokers than older adults. (The Rise of Cigars and Cigar-Smoking Harms)
  • A recent report from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, ‘Not Your Grandfather’s Cigar’, highlights the problems that arise from this explosion of cheap, flavored products and support the NYC provision to require a minimum pack size

Resources:

Next Steps

 

Learn more about NYC’s Point of Sale Legislation

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