You have to be at least 21 to buy cigarettes in SA starting Monday

City ordinance raising legal age to buy cigarettes to 21 goes into effect Monday

By Mary Claire Patton - Digital Content Curator

SAN ANTONIO - Starting Monday you will have to be at least 21-years-old to buy tobacco products in San Antonio.

The San Antonio City Council voted to pass the Tobacco 21 ordinance back in January in a 9-2 vote.

Under the revised ordinance retailers would be cited if caught selling tobacco to anyone under 21. The person attempting to buy, however, would not be cited.

Cigarettes, e-cigarettes, hookahs and chewing tobacco are all part of the ordinance.

San Antonio is the first Texas city to raise the legal minimum age for buying tobacco from 18 to 21.

Some local business owners, along with two councilmen, spoke out against the proposed change, with retailers saying it would hurt their profits.

Metro Health has pointed to the health benefits of making the change, saying it could stop many from ever picking up a cigarette.

Voting in favor of the ordinance were Mayor Ron Nirenberg and council members Roberto Trevino, William Cruz Shaw, Rebecca Viagran, Rey Saldana, Shirley Gonzales, Ana Sandoval, Manny Palaez and John Courage.

Councilmen Greg Brockhouse and Clayton Perry voted against it.

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