MD’s Cigarette Police Find Many Retailers Not Complying

Unfree State

The Maryland Dept of Health & Mental Hygiene — AKA the state cigarette police — performed 575 random inspections of retailers last year to find out how they were complying with the state law banning the sale of tobacco products to those under age 18.

The results were quite surprising. Four rural counties complied 100%, while high-population areas like Baltimore County ranked the lowest in compliance at a mere 50%.

At the same time, some rural counties like St. Mary’s reversed the trend by having a much lower 77.8% compliance, compared to the more urbanized county of Prince George’s, which scored
89.2% compliant.

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Why is it surprising? Well, I would have thought rural areas as a group would have resisted the nanny state’s cigarette demands, while the big cities would have been more likely to comply.

But this has not been the case.

  1. Frederick County: 100%; Cecil County: 100%; Garrett County: 100 and Kent County: 100%.
  2. Montgomery Co.: 96%.
  3. Baltimore City: 94%.
  4. Washington County: 93.8%.
  5. Charles County: 91.7 %.
  6. Harford County: 90.9%.
  7. Prince George’s Co.: 89.2%.
  8. Allegany County: 88.9%.
  9. Worcester County: 88.2%.
  10. Calvert County: 85.7%; and Dorchester County: 85.7%.
  11. Talbot County: 83.3%.
  12. Wicomico County: 81.8%.
  13. Anne Arundel Co.: 78.6%.
  14. St. Mary’s County: 77.8%.
  15. Howard County: 55.6%.
  16. Baltimore County: 50%.

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