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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Raising Legal Limit On Tobacco

I took this photograph.
Last week, the New York City Council voted to increase the legal age for buying tobacco to 21. Following New York’s lead, Washington, D.C. is looking at a similar measure. Washington D.C. Councilman Kenyan McDuffie, is introducing legislation, with the support of 12 other Councilman, to raise the legal limit from 18 to 21, according to U.S. News & World Report.

“Raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 will decrease access to cigarettes, and, more importantly, may decrease the rate of smoking in young adults,” McDuffie said in a news release. “By restricting tobacco sales to young people, we can prevent many of our youth from acquiring a terrible, deadly addiction.”

Unlike New York’s law, which encompasses e-cigarettes in their bill, the D.C. measure would not ban the electronic devices for young adults ages 18 to 21, the article notes. Washington, D.C.’s close proximity to Virginia has residents crossing the state line to buy less expensive cigarettes. The short trip to Virginia saves smokers $2.20 on each pack of cigarettes because the cigarette taxes are much lower.

The legal age for purchasing tobacco in New Jersey is 19, but a measure to raise the legal age to 21 has been introduced by Senator Richard Codey.

With any luck, the new legislation to raise the legal age for buying tobacco will keep young adults from starting to smoke all together.
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