Tobacco Compliance Bureau
The Tobacco Compliance Bureau is responsible for enforcing and monitoring compliance with the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement ("MSA") signed in 1998 by major tobacco companies and Attorneys General from 52 states and jurisdictions. In addition, the Bureau is responsible for the implementation and enforcement of numerous state laws and policies, such as the requirement that all cigarettes sold in New York be fire-safe. The Bureau also enforces certain federal laws relating to cigarettes, such as the Cigarette Contraband Trafficking Act and Jenkins Act.
The MSA was the result of the landmark litigation commenced by the State of New York, along with the other jurisdictions, against the five major tobacco manufacturers to redress the tobacco companies' illegal and deceptive marketing practices with respect to the promotion and sale of their tobacco products, particularly to minors, and the tobacco industry's concealment from the public the adverse health effects of smoking and the addictiveness of nicotine, and to recover health care costs associated with treating tobacco-related illnesses. Enforcement focuses on guaranteeing that the tobacco companies are not violating the prohibitions against advertising and/or marketing directed to young people, brand-name advertising, merchandising and sponsorships, and false and misleading advertising as well as ensuring compliance with the tobacco companies' monetary obligations under the MSA and New York's related laws.