Open States' stated mission is to improve civic engagement.
To be true to that goal, we can not stand by and be silent when a large portion of Americans face systemic racism and other forms of oppression. That oppression has meant being excluded from civic participation at the ballot box, being called un-American for peaceful protests, and being denied justice for crimes committed against them.
The Cigarette and Tobacco Products Tax Law imposes a tax on every distributor of cigarettes and tobacco products at specified rates. That law specifies that the taxes imposed by that law are in lieu of all other state, county, municipal, or district taxes on the privilege of distributing cigarettes or tobacco products. The California Constitution prohibits the Legislature from imposing taxes for local purposes, but allows the Legislature to authorize local governments to impose them.
This bill would authorize, on and after January 1, 2017, the board of supervisors of a county or city and county to impose a tax on the privilege of distributing cigarettes and tobacco products in the county or city and county, including within an incorporated city within the county, and would make conforming changes. This bill would define "distributing" to mean making a sale of cigarettes or tobacco products in a county or city and county that has not been taxed by a cigarette or tobacco products tax ordinance of that county or city and county.
This bill would authorize the board of supervisors of a county or city and county to enter into an agreement with another county or city and county to share any startup and ongoing administrative costs of a tax imposed pursuant to that authorization. This bill also would authorize the board of supervisors of a county or city and county to contract with the State Board of Equalization to perform functions incident to the administration or operation of the cigarette and tobacco products tax ordinance of the county, with reimbursement for costs incurred, and would require the State Board of Equalization to perform those functions pursuant to that contract.
This bill also would require the State Board of Equalization to permit the examination of its records with respect to the tax imposed pursuant to the Cigarette and Tobacco Products Tax Law upon request by a county or city and county officer or employee to the extent necessary for the proper administration of that local cigarette and tobacco products tax, and authorizes the State Board of Equalization to require reimbursement. The bill would make knowingly accessing, using, or disclosing that confidential information without authorization a crime, thereby imposing a state-mandated local program.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.