Virginia House Bill #2748 Affects Local Businesses

A new Virginia bill has bipartisan support to ban the sale of tobacco, nicotine products, alternative nicotine products and vaping products to anyone under the age of 21. House Bill #2748 was submitted on January 17th, 2019. "Tobacco product" means any product made of tobacco and includes cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, pipe tobacco, bidis, and wrappings. "Tobacco product" does not include any nicotine vapor product, alternative nicotine product, or product that is regulated by the FDA under Chapter V (21 U.S.C. § 351 et seq.) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

"Wrappings" includes papers made or sold for covering or rolling tobacco or other materials for smoking in a manner similar to a cigarette or cigar. According to supporters of the bill, they are concerned by teenagers vaping and claim it has already become a major healthcare issue.

According to a state survey report, roughly 14% of Virginians claim to be regular smokers. According to the report, Southwest Virginia has the highest rate of smokers, totalling more that 18% of the region's population, and that low income citizens are more likely to be smokers than wealthy people. Approximately 74% of all Virginian smokers wish to quit, with statistics showing more than 10,000 Commonwealth residents perishing each year from the habit.

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