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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Heather Edelson (DFL)

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Release: Governor Signs Tobacco 21 Legislation into Law

Saturday, May 16, 2020


SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Today, Governor Walz signed into law legislation that raises the age for Minnesotans to purchase tobacco, tobacco products, electronic delivery devices, and other nicotine products, to 21.

“Adopting statewide Tobacco 21 is urgently needed to provide clarity, accountability, and to make it easier for our state and local partners to help in standing up to Big Tobacco for our youth,” said Rep. Heather Edelson (DFL-Edina), the House chief author of the bill.

In December of 2019, Tobacco 21 became federal law, which meant the minimum age required to legally purchase tobacco products increased from 18 to 21 for the entire country. At the time, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) directed retailers to immediately implement the change. Some retailers, however, have expressed confusion and insisted they will not comply until they see the change made at the state level.

The initiative has a strong bipartisan coalition of support among health care professionals, ClearWay Minnesota, youth organizations, and several Minnesota cities who have already enacted Tobacco 21 locally.