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24-35-505. Hearings.

(1) Subject to the limitations contained in section 24-35-506, the division, on its own motion or on a complaint from another governmental agency responsible for the enforcement of laws relating to the prohibition of the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products to minors, shall have the power to penalize retailers for violations of section 24-35-503.

 

(2)(a) A retailer accused of violating section 24-35-503 shall be entitled to written notice of the time and place of the hearing personally delivered to the retailer at the actual retail location or mailed to the retailer at the last known address as shown by the records of the department. The retailer is also entitled to be represented by counsel, to present evidence, and to cross-examine witnesses.

 

(b) A retailer that does not claim an affirmative defense pursuant to section 24-35-506 (2) may waive their right to a hearing and pay the appropriate fine.

 

(3) A hearing pursuant to this section shall be conducted at a location designated by the division before a hearing officer. The hearing officer shall have the power to administer oaths and issue subpoenas to require the presence of persons and the production of documents relating to any alleged violation of section 24-35-503. 

 

(4) If the hearing officer finds, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the retailer violated section 24-35-503, the hearing officer may issue a written order or levy a fine against the retailer, subject to the provisions of section 24-35-506. 

 

(5) The findings of the hearing officer shall be a final agency order. Any appeal of the decision of the hearing officer shall be filed with the Colorado court of appeals pursuant to section 24-4-106 (11). 

 

(6) Any unpaid fine levied pursuant to this section together with reasonable attorney fees may be collected in a civil action filed by the attorney general. 

 

(7) Any fines collected for violations of section 24-35-503 shall be forwarded to the state treasurer who shall credit the same to the tobacco use prevention fund created in section 24-35-507.