XT 2003-12 Excise And Motor Fuel Tax Division Information
Release – Cigarette Master Settlement Agreement Changes -
August 7, 2003
The 125th General Assembly recently passed Amended Substitute
House Bill 95 that changes several of the requirements
surrounding the Cigarette Master Settlement Agreement (MSA).
These changes will affect tobacco manufacturers, wholesalers
Currently, cigarette and roll-your-own tobacco manufacturers
must be either a signatory to the MSA or make payments to a
qualified escrow account. This legislation provides for a Web
site where all brands, that have met one of the above two
requirements, will be listed. The Attorney General will
establish and maintain the Web site. The Web site will be
operational after August 11, 2003, and can be checked by
going to www.ag.state.oh.us and under
Current Features click on Tobacco Directory.
Ten days following the initial listing of the brands to the
Web site, it will be illegal to affix an Ohio cigarette tax
stamp or to sell or offer to sell in Ohio any brand of
cigarette or roll-your-own tobacco that is not included on
this list. Brands not on the list may be in your
possession waiting to be returned to your supplier, but may
not be in
your possession for sale or distribution in Ohio. The
Department of Taxation may confiscate any cigarettes or
roll-your-own tobacco found in violation of the statute and
may revoke the license of any wholesale or retail dealer that
distributes such products in Ohio. Wholesale and retail
dealers may also be charged with a first-degree misdemeanor
for the first offense and a fourth-degree felony for
subsequent offenses. Section 1346.09 (B) of the Ohio Revised
Code entitles the state to recover the costs of the
investigation, expert witness fees, court costs and
reasonable attorney‘s fees associated with any action to
enforce Sections 1346.05 through 1346.10 of the Ohio Revised
Ohio stamped cigarettes and tax paid other tobacco products
that may not be sold in Ohio should be returned to your
supplier. If this cannot be done, you may apply for a refund
of the tax provided that the product is destroyed. Do not
destroy the product before contacting the Excise and Motor
Fuel Tax Division.
The law requires the Attorney General to notify the
Department of Taxation of any pending additions or removals
to the list. The Department of Taxation will in turn give
notice to all cigarette wholesalers and distributors of other
tobacco products at least ten days prior to the effective
date of the pending additions or removals.
In order for you to receive timely notification, please
complete the enclosed form with the e-mail addresses that you
would like to receive this notification and return it in the
envelope provided by August 15, 2003. It is your
responsibility to notify the Department of Taxation when
there are e-mail address changes.
Retail cigarette dealers will be notified of these changes
and will also be able to access the list on the Attorney
General’s Web site.
Any questions may be directed to the Excise and Motor Fuel
Tax Division at (614) 466-7026.