FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 9, 2019
(512) 463-0120 office
AUSTIN, TX -- Today, the Texas Senate passed Senate Bill 21 joint-authored by Senator Joan Huffman and Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa to raise the minimum legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. According to national data, 95 percent of adult smokers begin smoking before they turn 21 and this bill would prohibit nonmilitary individuals under that age from being able to purchase cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and other tobacco products. This bill is now headed to the Texas House of Representatives for consideration.
Senator Hinojosa released the following statement:
"Tobacco products are primarily responsible for many preventable chronic diseases. Two sessions ago, I passed a bill that was signed by Governor Abbott to prohibit the sale of e-cigarettes to minors. SB 21 expands on that by making 21 the minimum legal age to purchase any tobacco product. I am proud to be a joint-author of this bill to help keep individuals away from the harmful effects of tobacco, decrease costs of preventable diseases caused by smoking, and more importantly, save lives."
In 2015, Senator Hinojosa was the author of Senate Bill 97, signed by Governor Greg Abbott, to prohibit the sale to any person under the age of 18 and prohibit a person under 18 from possessing or using e-cigarettes. The use of any product that contains nicotine is addictive and can have an adverse effect on adolescent brain development.