Healdsburg Raises Tobacco Sales Age to 21

HEALDSBURG (AP) – Healdsburg has become the first city in California to ban the sale of tobacco to anyone under the age of 21.

The city council voted 4-1 this week to pass the ordinance, which came at the urging of doctors and the American Lung Association.

The new rule raises the age from 18 to 21 for a person to purchase cigarettes and other tobacco products. It also includes electronic cigarettes.

Councilman Tom Chambers says officials in the Sonoma County city have an obligation to take steps to turn the tide on smoking.

Casting the dissenting vote was Councilman Gary Plass, who argued that the city is opening itself up to lawsuits from the tobacco industry and retailers.

Healdsburg is a city of 11,000 people in wine country 70 miles north of San Francisco.

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