A bill seeking to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products in New Hampshire is scheduled to get its first committee hearing today.

S.B. 545, which was introduced by Sen. David Waters, D-Dover, and Sen. Jeb Bradley, R-Wolfeboro, is scheduled for a hearing by the Senate Health and Human Services Committee at 2:15 pm today. It has already garnered five cosponsors, with a split of three Republicans and two Democrats.

The bill is fairly straightforward; other than a few changes to existing language in laws on the books, the bill seeks to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco products as well as alternative nicotine delivery products such as e-cigarettes from 18 to 21-years-old.

If passed, the increase would go into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.

Five states have made 21 the minimum age to purchase tobacco products so far: Hawaii, California, Maine, New Jersey and Oregon. Several states currently have legislation seeking that same increase under consideration, including Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Washington and West Virginia. A proposal has also been introduced at the federal level.

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.