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SB-631 Nitrous oxide: retail sales.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/17/2017 02:51 PM

Amended  IN  Senate  April 17, 2017


Senate Bill No. 631

Introduced by Senator Nielsen

February 17, 2017

An act to add Section 381f to the Penal Code, relating to nitrous oxide.


SB 631, as amended, Nielsen. Nitrous oxide: retail sales.
Existing law prohibits the possession of nitrous oxide with the intent of inhaling it for specified purposes, including to cause intoxication. Existing law also prohibits the sale of nitrous oxide to any person under 18 years of age. Existing law makes it a misdemeanor to knowingly dispense nitrous oxide to a person who will use it for specified prohibited purposes, if that person then causes death or great bodily injury to him himself or herself or another person. Finally, existing law requires a seller of nitrous oxide to keep a record of persons who purchase nitrous oxide from it and also to provide certain written warnings to the purchaser.
This bill would prohibit any a retailer of tobacco or tobacco-related products, as defined, from selling, offering, or exposing for sale nitrous oxide, as specified.
By creating a new crime or infraction, this bill would create 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.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


 Section 381f is added to the Penal Code, to read:

 (a) A retailer of tobacco or tobacco-related products who that sells, offers for sale, or exposes for sale any device, canister, tank, or receptacle either exclusively containing nitrous oxide or exclusively containing a chemical compound mixed with nitrous oxide is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b)An employee of a retailer of tobacco or tobacco-related products who sells or offers for sale, or is apparently in charge when any item described in subdivision (a) is exposed for sale, shall be liable under this section.


(b) The court shall order the suspension of the business license, for a period of up to one year, of a person who knowingly violates this section after having been previously convicted of a violation of this section, unless the owner of the business license can demonstrate a good faith attempt to prevent illegal sales by the owner’s employees.


(c) This section does not apply to the sale of nitrous oxide contained in food products for use as a propellant.


(d) A retailer of tobacco or tobacco-related products includes any business that primarily engages in the retail sale to consumers of cigarettes, cigars, little cigars, chewing tobacco, pipe tobacco, or snuff, or any liquid containing nicotine for use in an electronic vaporizing device, or any cigarette lighters, cigar cutters, rolling papers, smoking pipes, water pipes, hookahs, electronic cigarettes or electronic vaporizing device, or any other paraphernalia associated with the smoking or ingesting of tobacco, whether or not these products are the primary type of merchandise sold by that retailer. tobacco.

SEC. 2.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.