ATC Commissioner disappointed in number of citations during Summer Crackdown

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control has released the results of this year's Summer Crackdown.

Agents with the ATC conducted 5,474 compliance checks during its 2015 Summer Crackdown that resulted in 821 citations. Of those citations, 460 were issued for selling alcohol to minors and 361 of them were for selling tobacco to minors.

Officials say approximately 15 percent of the businesses checked during the Summer Crackdown sold alcohol or tobacco to minors which is about the same as previous years.

ATC Commissioner Troy Hebert says although the results have been about the same, the number of non-compliance is still disappointing.

"We are not satisfied with a 15 percent non-compliance rate, but the good news is that 85% did the right thing," says Hebert. "There is nothing good that can come out of selling alcohol or tobacco to a minor and the ATC will hold those that sold accountable."

The summer initiative is an attempt by the ATC to prevent access of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products to minors. Statistics show an increase in teen alcohol consumption during the summer months. Most of the operatives used in the Summer Crackdown were 16 and 17-year-olds.

This is the third year Hebert ordered ATC agents to increase the number of random compliance checks at retail outlets that sell alcohol and tobacco products statewide during the summer months.

Anyone caught selling or serving alcohol or tobacco products to minors are subject to criminal and/or administrative charges. Businesses and servers face fines that range from $500 to $5,000 and penalties that could result in suspension and revocation of their alcohol and tobacco permits.

Copyright 2015 WAFB. All rights reserved.