Columbus considering increasing smoking age to 21

COLUMBUS (AP) – Ohio’s capital city is considering a ban on the sale of tobacco products to any individuals younger than the age of 21.

The Columbus Dispatch reports that under the proposal, retailers in Columbus would be required to ask for identification for anyone younger than 30 who wants to purchase tobacco or tobacco paraphernalia.

Approximately 2,000 tobacco retailers in Columbus would have to purchase an annual sales license for $150 if the ban is approved. Stores caught selling to anyone under 21 would face fines of $500 for a first offense and $1,000 for any subsequent violations.

The proposal would not criminalize the physical act of smoking for residents under the new age restriction.

Columbus City Council will vote on legislation supporting the ban in December. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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