UPDATE: Smoke Shop Owner Reacts to Federal Highway Bill Signing
COLUMBIA - Roll On owner Bruce Hendren said he has already sent a worker home early Saturday after President Obama signed a federal highway bill Friday. According to the bill, the federal government considers businesses that use "roll-your-own" machines cigarette manufacturers. Section 100122 would hold Roll On to the same standards and tax regulations as big cigarette corporations.
This means Hendren is no longer using his roll-your-own machine in the business. "Starting Monday, I'll be working pretty much by myself," Hendren said. "It's going to have a drastic negative effect on sales."
Before the bill was signed, Roll On rented out use of its roll-your-own machine. As a result, Hendren said he wishes he could have given customers more notice to "stock up" on tobacco products they could roll in the store.
Hendren said he is now focusing on adapting his business to the changes, and he can only run the machine for his own personal use. Hendren is planning to sell small manual machines so people can roll their own cigarettes after purchasing tobacco from Roll On.