Rhode Island could soon have its first city to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products to 21, as on Monday the Central Falls City Council passed an ordinance that attempt to restrict tobacco to teenagers.
While the city has yet to post the ordinance, WJAR-TV reports that it still needs the mayor’s signature, which if it gets, will put the increase into effect on April 1. There has also been no mention fines or other punishments or if it applies to all nicotine delivery products. Currently, retailers can face a fine of up to $100 for selling to a person under the current age of 18.
This isn’t the first time that the issue of raising the minimum age has come up in the state, however, as in 2016 a pair of bills were introduced in the state legislature seeking an increase to 21. Both bills died in committee. The matter has not yet come back to the state General Assembly, though WPRI-TV reports that it is due to be introduced this session as well.
Central Falls is home to just under 20,000 residents and is located approximately seven miles north of Providence.