Q&A for Tobacco Ordinance No. 878

Updated on 11/15/2021

On November 2, 2021, the Washington County Board of Commissioners passed Ordinance 878 to protect the health of Washington County youth as well as communities disproportionately affected by tobacco. We will continue to update this page as we get additional questions from retailers and the public.

Questions about Ordinance 878

What is Ordinance No. 878?
The countywide ordinance prohibits the sale of flavored tobacco products and flavored synthetic nicotine. The ordinance also prohibits price promotions, coupons and discounts.

Who does the ordinance apply to?
The ordinance applies to all businesses that sell tobacco, synthetic nicotine and/or vape products in Washington County, Oregon. 

When does the ordinance go into effect?
The ordinance goes into effect on December 2, 2021, but it will not be enforced until January 1, 2022. This means that retailers have until January 1, 2022, to remove all flavored tobacco products from their shelves.

How will the ordinance be enforced?
This ordinance will be enforced along with the new statewide tobacco retail license law. Businesses will be inspected annually to ensure compliance with the tobacco retail license as well as compliance with the Washington County ordinance.

What is the penalty for a retailer if they violate the ordinance?
It is currently a Class A civil infraction. Details here.

Can a Washington County distributor sell flavored tobacco products to retailers outside of the county?
A Washington County distributor can sell flavored tobacco or synthetic nicotine products to locations outside of Washington County, but not to retailers located within the county. A distributor cannot display flavored tobacco or synthetic nicotine products where a customer can see or have access to them.

Questions about tobacco retail licensing

What is tobacco retail licensing?
During the 2021 Legislative Session, Oregon passed statewide tobacco retail licensing. This means that all businesses that sell tobacco, nicotine products and inhalant delivery systems will be required to obtain a license to sell the product to consumers. This is similar to what is already required of businesses that sell alcohol or marijuana.

How do I get a tobacco retail license?
Retailers can visit the Oregon Department of Revenue cigarette and tobacco products licensing website. Retailers can be begin applying for a license on December 1, 2021.

Have a question not answered here? Email us at TobaccoRetail@co.washington.or.us