On Tuesday, the Maine Legislature voted to override Gov. Paul LePage’s veto of a bill to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21-years-old, making Maine the fourth state in the country to pass such an increase and the second in recent weeks.
The veto was overridden by a 29-5 vote in the Senate voted 29-5 and a 90-44 vote in the House.
The increase will go into effect on July 1, 2018, though individuals who are already at least 18 by the increase date will be allowed to continue to purchase tobacco products thanks to an amendment passed during the legislative process. Retailers who violate the law would face a fine of $300 for the first offense, not less than $600 for the 2nd offense and not less than $1,000 for each offense thereafter.
In the original votes, the House voted 113-34 in favor of L.D. 1170, while the Senate approved the bill 31-4.