A trio of lawmakers has introduced a new bill that would raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21 in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
S.B. 1217 has been introduced by Sen. Thomas Norment, R-3; Sen. Bryce Reeves, R-17; and Sen Richard Saslaw, D-35. In addition to raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco products, it would also “add nicotine, vapor products and alternative nicotine products” to the list of tobacco products.
The change would also mean that individuals under the age of 21 might not be able to enter certain cigar shops in the state.
The bill does not adjust the fines associated with violating the existing law. Individuals caught trying to purchase tobacco products could be subject to fines of up to $100 for the first violation, $200 for the second and $500 for the third. Retailers who sell to those under the legal age are subject to $500 in civil penalties for the first violation, $100 for the second and $2,500 for any additional violations.