Senate Raises Minimum Age For Purchasing Tobacco Products
The Massachusetts Senate has voted overwhelmingly to raise the minimum age for purchasing cigarettes and other tobacco products from 18 to 21 across the state.
The higher age is already in effect in Boston and more than 100 other cities and towns.
The bill, approved Thursday on a 32-2 vote, also establishes new regulations for electronic cigarettes and bans tobacco sales in pharmacies and health care facilities. It now moves to the House.
Stores caught selling tobacco to people under 21 would face fines ranging from $100 to $300 but there would be no penalties for minors who smoke.
Under the proposed law, anyone who turns 18 by Jan. 1, 2017, could still buy tobacco.
Hawaii is currently the only U.S. state with a tobacco purchase age of 21. (Associated Press)