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No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
A Class C misdemeanor is punishable by a fine of not more than $500. Costs associated with enforcement and prosecution could likely be absorbed within existing resources. Revenue gain from fines imposed and collected is not anticipated to have a significant fiscal impact. In addition to the fine, punishment can include up to 180 days of deferred disposition.
This bill has been substantively updated since we reported on it in its original chamber. Due to certain changes, we have moved from neutral to oppose.
The bill would amend Chapter 161 of the Health and Safety Code to treat e-cigarettes in a similar manner as cigarettes as it relates to distribution, use by minors, and prevention of use by minors. The bill would create requirements relating to the packaging of e-cigarette nicotine containers and the delivery sale of e-cigarettes.
The bill would amend Chapter 28, Education Code to require school districts to publish information regarding policies relating to the use of e-cigarettes. The bill would amend Chapter 38, Education Code and Chapter 48, Penal Code to treat e-cigarettes in the same manner as cigarettes as they relate to use and possession at school-related activities and use in public places.
This legislation would create onerous regulations that would regulate e-cigarettes in much the same way as tobacco products are currently regulated, when there is not sufficient evidence to prove e-cigarettes are as harmful as tobacco products. Due to these limited government concerns, we oppose SB 97.