A year and a half after refusing to sign a tobacco purchasing age increase, Gov. Chris Christie did just that.

Earlier today, Christie signed into law a bill that will raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco from 19 to 21.

Effective Nov. 1, it will be illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to purchase tobacco in the state. Retailers will be subject of fines between $250-1,000 should they sell to someone under the age.

Smoking and possession of tobacco products will still be legal for those under the age of 21.

While the bill overwhelmingly passed the state’s Assembly and Senate, it was unclear whether Christie, who is in his last term as governor, would sign it. Last January, he pocket vetoed a similar measure, refusing to sign the bill and preventing it from becoming law.

New Jersey joins California and Hawaii as the only states to have a minimum purchasing age of 21.

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Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I have written about the cigar industry for more than a decade, covering everything from product launches to regulation to M&A. In addition, I handle a lot of the behind-the-scenes stuff here at halfwheel. I enjoy playing tennis, watching boxing, falling asleep to the Le Mans 24, wearing sweatshirts year-round and eating gyros. echte liebe.