MD General Assembly approves raising age for buying tobacco, vaping products

By: David M. Higgins II

Annapolis, MD– On Wednesday, April 3, 2019 the Maryland General Assembly approved a bill that raises the legal age to purchase tobacco and vaping products from 18 to 21.

The bill now goes to Governor Larry Hogan to sign or veto.

The bill also changes the definition of tobacco products to include electronic smoking devices, authorizes the Maryland Department of Health to conduct unannounced inspections, requires specific signage at specified retailers, alters restrictions on selling tobacco products through vending machines and states retailers who sell to minors will have to pay a civil penalty.

The bill received bipartisan support in the General Assembly. The lawmakers hope that the bill, and tobacco education programs will cut down on teen smoking.

If Governor Hogan signs the bill( or overridden due to veto), Maryland will become the 10th state to raise the age to 21.

This is a developing story.

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