NYC pushes legal smoking age to 21

NYC pushes legal smoking age to 21

SMOKE 'EM IF YOU GOT 'EM: NYC will likely raise the minimum smoking age to 21. Photo: Associated Press

JAKE PEARSON, Associated Press
JENNIFER PELTZ, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Young New Yorkers who want to smoke will soon have to wait for their 21st birthdays before they can buy a pack of cigarettes.

That’s because the New York City Council has voted overwhelmingly to approve a bill that would raise the purchasing age for cigarettes, certain tobacco products and even electronic-vapor smokes from 18 to 21.

Lawmakers voted Wednesday. The bill is supported by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He has 30 days to sign it into law.

The council also passed a bill that sets a minimum $10.50-a-pack price for tobacco cigarettes and steps up law enforcement on illegal tobacco sales.

Advocates hope raising the age will reduce smoking rates among young people. Critics say it’s patronizing to bar people from smoking while allowing them to serve in the military.

Latest Headlines

in Music

This week’s top alternative tracks


LISTEN: This week's top alternative songs, according to the weekly Billboard chart.

in Entertainment

Anne Hathaway expecting first child


The Oscar winner is expecting her first child, according to reports.

in Music

Jack White launches new Third Man Records store in Detroit


Rocker Jack White has launched his first Third Man Records venture in his native Detroit.

in Black Friday, Lifestyle, National

Black Friday crowds thin in subdued start to holiday shopping


America's annual Black Friday shopping extravaganza was short on fireworks this year.

in Black Friday, Viral Videos

WATCH: Holiday parodies of the year’s biggest hits


From "Bad Blood" and "Watch Me," to "Uptown Funk," here are the year's hottest songs made fit for the holidays.