St. Louis, Mo. could be the next major American city to increase the minimum age to purchase tobacco products and e-cigarettes to 21-years-old, as this week its Board of Aldermen gave approval to the first reading of a pair of ordinances that would do just that.
After clearing the board’s Health and Human Services committee last week, the ordinances got the board’s first blessing on Thursday, with a second hearing possible as soon as next Friday, Nov. 18, when the board will meet next. Mayor Francis Slay has already come out in support of the increase and could sign it the same day if it passes, according to a report from LakeExpo.com.
Should the proposal become law, any person who is determined to have sold tobacco products or alternative nicotine products to a person under 21-years-old would face a fine of no less than $100 for the first conviction, $250 for a second conviction and $500 for a third.
St. Louis County approved a similar increase in September, and an increase by the city would unify the two entities.
St. Louis has a population of approximately 315,685 residents, making it the second largest city in the state behind Kansas City and the 60th most populous city in the United States. Kansas City, Mo. passed an increase in the tobacco purchasing age to 21 in Nov. 2015.