26-57-257

Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control.

(a)

(1) The Governor shall employ a person to serve as Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control.

(2) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor.

(b) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall present all evidence tending to prove violations of law or regulations at hearings held by the Arkansas Tobacco Control Board.

(c) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may employ other personnel as he or she deems necessary and as authorized by the General Assembly.

(d) Any personnel employed by the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall serve at his or her pleasure.

(e)

(1) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control and the board each may adopt, keep, and use a common seal.

(2) This seal shall be used for authentication of the records, process, and proceedings of the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control and the board, respectively.

(3) Judicial notice shall be taken of each use of this seal in all of the courts of the state.

(f) Any process, notice, or other paper that the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may be authorized by law to issue shall be deemed sufficient if signed by the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control and authenticated by the seal of the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control.

(g) Any process, notice, or other paper that the board may be authorized by law to issue shall be deemed sufficient if signed by the chair of the Arkansas Tobacco Control Board and authenticated by the seal of the board.

(h) All acts, orders, proceedings, rules, regulations, entries, minutes, and other records of the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control and all reports and documents filed with the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may be proved in any court of this state by a copy thereof certified to by the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control with the seal of the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control attached.

(i) All acts, orders, proceedings, rules, entries, minutes, and other records of the board and all reports and documents filed with the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may be proved in any court of this state by a copy thereof certified to by the chair with the seal of the board attached.

(j)

(1) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall maintain records of all permits and licenses issued, suspended, denied, or revoked by the board.

(2) The records shall be in such form as to provide ready information as to the identity of the licensees, including the names of major stockholders and directors of corporations holding licenses or permits and the location of the licensed or permitted premises.

(k) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall recognize the Division of Aging, Adult, and Behavioral Health Services of the Department of Human Services as the agency responsible for ensuring full compliance with the Public Health Service Act, § 1926(b), 42 U.S.C. § 300x-26(b), and shall call upon administrative departments of the state, county, and city governments, sheriffs, city police departments, or other law enforcement officers for such information and assistance as the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may deem necessary in the performance of the duties imposed upon him or her by this subchapter.

(l) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may inspect or cause to be inspected any premises where tobacco products, vapor products, alternative nicotine products, or e-liquid products are manufactured, imported, distributed, stored, or sold.

(m) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may:

(1) Examine or cause to be examined any person under oath and examine or cause to be examined books and records of any licensee;

(2) Hear testimony and take proof material to his or her information and the discharge of his or her duties under this section;

(3) Administer oaths or cause oaths to be administered; and

(4)

(A) Issue subpoenas to require the attendance of witnesses and the production of books and records.

(B) Any circuit court by written order may require the attendance of witnesses or the production of relevant books or other records subpoenaed by the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control, and the court may compel obedience to its order by proceedings for contempt.

(n) All hearings and appeals from any hearing shall be conducted in accordance with the Arkansas Administrative Procedure Act, § 25-15-201 et seq.

(o) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall exercise other powers, functions, and duties as are or may be imposed or conferred upon him or her by law or the board.

(p) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall have other powers, functions, and duties pertaining to the issuance, suspension, and revocation of the permits and licenses enumerated in § 26-57-219 that previously were granted to the Director of the Department of Finance and Administration, except those that are specifically delegated to the Department of Finance and Administration by this subchapter.

(q) (1) (A) The power and duty to collect taxes imposed on tobacco and tobacco products is specifically exempted from the powers and duties granted or assigned to the board or the director.

(B) However, a permit or license holder's failure to pay taxes or fees imposed on tobacco products or any permit or license fees imposed by this subchapter in a timely manner is grounds for the nonissuance, suspension, revocation, or nonrenewal of any permits or licenses issued by the board.

(C) Failure to timely and fully pay any other state and local taxes as reported by the Director of the Department of Finance and Administration shall also constitute grounds for the nonissuance, suspension, revocation, or nonrenewal of any permits or licenses issued by the board.

(2)

(A) Each year the Director of the Department of Finance and Administration shall report to the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control all permit and license holders who are more than ninety (90) days delinquent on any state and local taxes.

(B) The Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall not issue or renew any permit or license issued under this section for any permit or license holder more than ninety (90) days delinquent on any privilege fee or tax addressed in this section unless the permittee or licensee demonstrates that he or she is current under a valid repayment agreement for the delinquent tax.

(3)

(A) Each year the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control shall send notices to all permit and license holders more than ninety (90) days delinquent on any state and local taxes.

(B) This notice shall inform the permit or license holder that he or she is delinquent on payment of state and local taxes due the Director of the Department of Finance and Administration and that the permit or license holder will be unable to obtain or renew the permit or license that he or she holds until such time as the person becomes current in the payment of the tax due the Director of the Department of Finance and Administration, or until such time as the person enters into a valid repayment agreement with the department for the payment of the delinquent tax.

(r) The enforcement of state laws relating to the prohibition of the barter or sale of tobacco in any form, vapor products, alternative nicotine products, e-liquid products, or cigarette papers to minors by multiple state agencies shall be coordinated to avoid duplicative inspections of the same retailer by multiple state agencies.

(s) (1) Child safety being of paramount concern when dealing with alternative nicotine products and e-liquid products, the Director of Arkansas Tobacco Control may adopt safety and hygiene rules for persons that prepare or mix e-liquid products or alternative nicotine products that include without limitation:

(A) Child-resistant packaging effectiveness standards in accordance with § 26-57-254;

(B) Regulation of the production of custom or "create your own" e-liquids, or alternative nicotine product mixes; and

(C) Workplace safety rules for any location where e-liquids or alternative nicotine products are mixed or prepared, including without limitation:

(i) The availability and requirement for use of hand washing sinks in the preparation area for employee use that have hot and cold water, soap, hand-drying equipment, and a waste collection container;

(ii) Cleanliness and maintenance of e-liquid preparation and mixing equipment;

(iii) Employee use of protective gloves or other items when using e-liquid preparation and mixing equipment;

(iv) Prohibition of food and drink consumption and vapor, cigarette, or tobacco use in any e-liquid preparation or mixing area; and

(v) Prohibition of the presence of any animals in any e-liquid preparation or mixing area.

(2) The rules promulgated under subdivision (s)(1) of this section shall not apply to an e-liquid in a cartridge that is sold, marketed, or intended for use in a vapor product if the cartridge is prefilled and sealed by the manufacturer and is not intended to be opened by the consumer.

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