New York City Council Approves Cigarette Purchase Age Change from 18 to 21

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Photo Credit: Anthony Posey SIR:Poseyal Desposyni via Compfight cc
The New York City Council approved legislation to raise the minimum age to purchase cigarettes from 18 to 21. By a vote of 35 to 10, the new law could got into effect as soon as six months from now.

Federal law mandates a minimum age of 18, but localities and states are free to set their own minimum age. Alabama, Alaska, and Utah have a cigarette purchase age of 19, the only three states in the country that exceed the federal standard.

See also: Proposal to Raise Cigarette Age to 21 Is Quinn's Latest Bloomberg Move

According to a statement from the City Council, the move was designed to make sure to head off nicotine addiction in people under 21, the time when most lifelong smokers begin.

"This legislation will reduce smoking rates among New Yorkers -- especially young New Yorkers -- sparing them years of nicotine addiction and health problems," City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said in the statement.

The proposal to raise the cigarette purchase age was submitted to the council in April by Quinn and Health Commissioner Thomas A. Farley. At the time, the move more closely aligned Quinn with Mayor Bloomberg ahead of the Democratic primary, an association that was partly to blame for the implosion of her bid for mayor.

Send your story tips to the author, Raillan Brooks.





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13 comments
Lee A Wells
Lee A Wells

So at 18 a person is responsible enough to be given a vote in who runs the country, but they can't be trusted with a pack of cigarettes. These 21 laws are bullshit, either you've a legal adult at 18 or you're not.

Thomas Mosley
Thomas Mosley

Cigarettes are the least of our worries what a waste of time..

Thomas Mosley
Thomas Mosley

I really think if your 18 and are able to make a decision to Join the Military at 18 you obviously have the skills to abstain from these vices or raise the age limit to 21 for everything including drivers licenses,etc..

Dwight Loew
Dwight Loew

Sure, let's make it so that those unemployed at 18 can't even get a job serving our Country. I think that's a fine solution to a liberal personal agenda to stopping smoking for others. What the fuck has happen to NYC? Jesus Christ. Please leave and bring back the 60's, 70's and 80's when NYC had some grit and balls.

Thomas Mosley
Thomas Mosley

if you can go into the Armed forces at 18 I think you should be allowed to purchase Alcohol and cancer sticks at 18.thats messed up..

Jenn Maskell
Jenn Maskell

Oh great, now the 20 years olds are going to ask me to buy them booze and smokes! lol

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