Two lawmakers in the Northern Marianas plan to get tough on shop keepers who sell tobacco products to minors.
Under the proposed legislation, a retailer found to give, sell or who permits to give or sell any tobacco product to someone under the age of 18, will face a fine of up to one thousand US dollars, jail of up to a year and as much as 250 hours of community service for a first offence.
Previously, businesses received a warning letter for the first offence.
For a second offence the penalties would escalate to a fine of 2,000 US dollars, up to two years jail and up to 350 hours of community service.
Subsequent offences would lead to the temporary suspension of the trading licence.