A bill to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco and nicotine delivery products in Washington state continues to move forward, but a few changes have been made since it was introduced in January.

After clearing the House Committee on Health Care & Wellness by a 12-3 vote in mid-February, the bill went to the House Committee on Finance, where it was met by a pair of important changes. First, the proposed age was dropped from 21 to 19, and an effective date of July 1, 2019 was added, with the bill then passed by a 9-7 vote by that committee.

Following that, an amendment was filed to change it the effective date to July 1, 2015, meaning that if it passed the full House of Representatives as well as the Senate, the change would go into effect this summer.

Earlier today, the bill was scheduled for a second floor reading by the Rules Committee, with the possibility it could still be considered by the end of the day.

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Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.