[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Washington 10-20-1997 by Ord. No. 22-97 (Sec. 6-17 of the Revised General Ordinances). Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- FREESTANDING OR ATTACHED TOBACCO/CIGARETTE DISPLAY
- Any display promotion of tobacco/cigarette products in any area of a store or food establishment not specifically behind a sales counter and within the grasp of the public so as to be self-service.
- Any individual, partnership, cooperative, association, corporation, personal representative, receiver, trustee, assignee or any other legal entity.
- Any product made from the tobacco plant for the purpose of smoking, chewing, inhaling and other personal use, including cigars, chewing tobacco, pipe tobacco, snuff and cigarettes in any form.
- TOBACCO RETAILER
- Any person or entity that operates a store, stand, booth, concession or place which sells tobacco; also a person or entity that owns, operates or maintains a vending machine and/or vending machine location.
- VENDING MACHINE
- Any automated, self-service device which, upon insertion of money, tokens or any form of payment, dispenses cigarettes or other tobacco products in any form.
It shall be unlawful to sell tobacco/cigarettes to a person under 18 years of age.
It shall be unlawful for a tobacco/cigarette retailer to sell or permit to be sold tobacco/cigarettes to any individual without requesting and examining a photo identification from the purchaser to conclude their age as 18 years or greater unless the seller has some conclusive basis for determining the buyer is over the age of 26 years.
It shall be unlawful to offer for sale or to sell tobacco/cigarettes through a tobacco/cigarette vending machine or from a freestanding or attached display of tobacco/cigarettes in the Township of Washington.
All tobacco/cigarette machines and freestanding or attached displays of tobacco/cigarette within the grasp of the public and not specifically behind a sales counter made unlawful by the terms of this chapter shall be removed within 30 days from the effective date of this chapter.
Whenever the Health Officer/Sanitarian or other authorized representative of the Board of Health reasonably believes there exists a violation of this chapter, he/she may issue a summons and complaint not later than 90 days after discovery of the alleged violation. The complaint shall be written and shall state with reasonable particularity the nature of the violation, including reference to the article and section of this chapter alleged to have been violated. The complaint shall be delivered by the police or sent certified mail to the alleged violator.
The Health Officer/Sanitarian or other authorized representative of the Board of Health or any other person charged with enforcement of this chapter, after giving proper identification, may inspect any matter, thing, place, record, incident or event as necessary.
It shall be unlawful for any person to molest, willfully oppose, verbally abuse or otherwise obstruct the Health Office/Sanitarian or other authorized representative of the Board of Health, who may request the assistance of the Washington Township Police Department or other police agency or peace officer when necessary to execute his or her official duty in the manner prescribed by law.
Citizens may bring complaints against violators of this chapter through the Board of Health or Police Department.
Unless otherwise provided by law, statute or ordinance, any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, pay a fine of $250 for the first offense, $500 for a second offense and $1,000 for a third and each consecutive offense. Complaints shall be made in Municipal Court of the Township of Washington or before such other judicial officer having authority under the laws of the State of New Jersey.
The defendant may, after reading and understanding the penalties, plead guilty to the charges and, after signing an affidavit, may pay the appropriate fine to the Clerk of the Municipal Court, in lieu of a Court appearance.
Each sale of tobacco/cigarettes to a minor shall constitute a separate violation.