Governor Wants Crackdown on Smoke Shops

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - Governor Brad Henry says he will ask the
2005 Oklahoma Legislature to approve new enforcement tools to stop
tobacco wholesalers and tribal smoke shops from circumventing the
law.

Henry's proposals are aimed curtailing the sale of cigarettes
carrying six-cent tax stamps intended only for smoke shops in
border counties, where competition with other states is an issue.

Henry said the Tax Commission's enforcement tools are outdated
and insufficient to regulate the tobacco industry.

Henry has drawn criticism from some Republican lawmakers who say
non-tribal businesses, especially in the Tulsa area, are losing money because of loopholes in tobacco compacts between the state and some tribes.


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