Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

161119digest

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

161119digest

Article excerpt

ST. LOUIS > City to outlaw sale of tobacco, vaping products to those under 21 * It will be illegal to sell tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or nicotine vapor products to anyone under the age of 21 in St. Louis.

The Board of Aldermen overwhelmingly passed on Friday legislation that will subject store employees to fines of $100, $250 and $500 for first, second and third offenses, respectively.

Alderman Dionne Flowers sponsored the so-called Tobacco 21 or T21 legislation. She argued that raising the purchasing age to 21 from 18 was an effective strategy to reduce the prevalence of tobacco and nicotine products in high schools, where many people pick up the habit.

She said it was easy for an 18-year-old high school student to buy those products and then introduce them to their younger friends. "By the age of 21, their social circle has changed," Flowers said.

A spokesman for Mayor Francis Slay said he would sign the bill. The legislation will go into effect immediately upon his signature.

St. Louis joins St. Louis County, Kansas City, Chicago and roughly 200 other cities across the country that have passed Tobacco 21 legislation. (Koran Addo)

JEFFERSON CITY > State GOP chairman to resign * Missouri GOP Chairman John Hancock announced Friday that he was stepping down from his current role in a party he said was "stronger than it's ever been in state government."

His decision comes after a banner year for the Missouri GOP, with Republican candidates for statewide office sweeping the ticket. Hancock is reluctant to take too much credit for that, instead praising the party's executive director, Jonathon Prouty, and contending that "you win campaigns because you have better campaigns."

Still, Hancock said he was glad to see the Republican Party in the state grow stronger and more unified that it had been when he took the helm.

"We inherited a Republican Party in Missouri that was in extreme debt, was highly divided, and I am pleased that through a lot of storms and challenges the party emerged financially, sound, stable, united and really in a very good position going forward," Hancock said.

It's unclear who will succeed him when the party selects his replacement in January. …

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