Three Kentucky state representatives have proposed an increase in the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21-years-old.

Reps. David Watkins, D-11; Joni Jenkins, D-44; and Tom Burch, D-30 have jointly introduced HB 299, which would increase the minimum age to purchase tobacco products, alternative nicotine, and vapor products. The bill seeks a start date of August 1.

The bill has been referred to the Kentucky House Health & Welfare Committee.

In January, Reps. Watkins and Burch, along with Rep. Mary Lou Marzian, D-34, introduced a bill seeking to increase the tax on other tobacco products–including premium cigars–from 15 to 18 percent of the wholesale price. That proposal still sits with the House Appropriations & Revenue Committee.

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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 previously the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for Major League Baseball, plus I'm a voice over artist. Prior to joining halfwheel, I covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.