Waterloo Police officers, in partnership with the Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division, will soon be conducting tobacco compliance checks at local businesses to ensure that merchants are selling tobacco products according to the State Code of Iowa. This project is intended to help businesses remain compliant with the law, which, in part, states that it is illegal to sell, give or otherwise supply tobacco or tobacco products to any person under 18 years of age.
Statewide compliance for tobacco sales has steadily improved since the inception of the Iowa Pledge program in 2000. Presently the compliance rate is at 92%.
If a violation were to occur, the fine for the clerk selling the tobacco product is $100 for the first offense, $250 for the second offense and $500 for the third and subsequent offenses. Surcharge and court costs fees will also be added to these fines. The business where the offense occurs is also subject to a civil penalty ranging from $300 for a first violation, to revocation of their tobacco permit for a fifth offense within four years.
The Waterloo Police Department and the Iowa Alcoholic Beverages Division's goal is to work with and educate merchants to they are compliant with the law. We encourage you to think twice before making that sale.
Captain John Beckman
Waterloo Police Department