Tobacco Reserve Fund and Escrow Compliance.
Part 1. Tobacco Reserve Fund.
§ 66-290. Definitions.
As used in this Article:
(1) "Adjusted for inflation" means increased in accordance with the formula for inflation adjustment set forth in Exhibit C to the Master Settlement Agreement.
(2) "Affiliate" means a person who directly or indirectly owns or controls, is owned or controlled by, or is under common ownership or control with, another person. Solely for purposes of this definition, the terms "owns," "is owned," and "ownership" mean ownership of an equity interest, or the equivalent thereof, of ten percent (10%) or more, and the term "person" means an individual, partnership, committee, association, corporation, or any other organization or group of persons.
(3) "Allocable share" means Allocable Share as that term is defined in the Master Settlement Agreement.
(4) "Cigarette" means any product that contains nicotine, is intended to be burned or heated under ordinary conditions of use, and consists of or contains (i) any roll of tobacco wrapped in paper or in any substance not containing tobacco; or (ii) tobacco, in any form, that is functional in the product, which, because of its appearance, the type of tobacco used in the filler, or its packaging and labeling, is likely to be offered to, or purchased by, consumers as a cigarette; or (iii) any roll of tobacco wrapped in any substance containing tobacco which, because of its appearance, the type of tobacco used in the filler, or its packaging and labeling, is likely to be offered to, or purchased by, consumers as a cigarette described in clause (i) of this definition. The term "cigarette" includes "roll-your-own" (i.e., any tobacco which, because of its appearance, type, packaging, or labeling is suitable for use and likely to be offered to, or purchased by, consumers as tobacco for making cigarettes). For purposes of this definition of "cigarette," 0.09 ounces of "roll-your-own" tobacco shall constitute one individual "cigarette."
(5) "Master Settlement Agreement" means the settlement agreement (and related documents) entered into on November 23, 1998, by the State and leading United States tobacco product manufacturers.
(6) "Qualified escrow fund" means an escrow arrangement with a federally or State chartered financial institution having no affiliation with any tobacco product manufacturer and having assets of at least one billion dollars ($1,000,000,000) where such arrangement requires that such financial institution hold the escrowed funds' principal for the benefit of releasing parties and prohibits the tobacco product manufacturer placing the funds into escrow from using, accessing, or directing the use of the funds' principal except as consistent with G.S. 66-291(b).
(7) "Released claims" means Released Claims as that term is defined in the Master Settlement Agreement.
(8) "Releasing parties" means Releasing Parties as that term is defined in the Master Settlement Agreement.
(9) "Tobacco Product Manufacturer" means an entity that after the effective date of this Article directly (and not exclusively through any affiliate):
a. Manufactures cigarettes anywhere that such manufacturer intends to be sold in the United States, including cigarettes intended to be sold in the United States through an importer (except where such importer is an original participating manufacturer, as that term is defined in the Master Settlement Agreement, that will be responsible for the payments under the Master Settlement Agreement with respect to such cigarettes as a result of the provisions of subsection II(mm) of the Master Settlement Agreement and that pays the taxes specified in subsection II(z) of the Master Settlement Agreement, and provided that the manufacturer of such cigarettes does not market or advertise such cigarettes in the United States);
b. Is the first purchaser anywhere for resale in the United States of cigarettes manufactured anywhere that the manufacturer does not intend to be sold in the United States; or
c. Becomes a successor of an entity described in sub-subdivision a. or b. of this subdivision.
The term "Tobacco Product Manufacturer" shall not include an affiliate of a tobacco product manufacturer unless such affiliate itself falls within any of sub-subdivisions a. through c. of this subdivision.
(10) "Units sold" means the number of individual cigarettes sold in the State by the applicable tobacco product manufacturer (whether directly or through a distributor, retailer, or similar intermediary or intermediaries) during the year in question, on which the State has authority under federal law to impose excise or similar taxes or to collect escrow. The term does not include cigarettes sold (i) on a federal installation in a transaction that is exempt from state taxation under federal law or (ii) on a Native American tribe's reservation to a consumer who is an adult enrolled member of that tribe in a transaction that is exempt from state taxation under federal law. The Secretary of Revenue shall promulgate such rules as are necessary to ascertain the amount of State excise tax paid on the cigarettes of such tobacco product manufacturer for each year. In lieu of adopting rules, the Secretary of Revenue may issue bulletins or directives requiring taxpayers to submit to the Department of Revenue the information necessary to make the required determination under this subdivision. (1999-311, s. 1; 2002-145, s. 2; 2015-241, s. 6.24(b).)