Why did Portland pass this ordinance?

Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States, killing more than 480,000 people each year. Each day in the United States, more than 3,800 youth aged 18 or younger smoke their first cigarette, and an additional 2,100 youth and young adults become daily cigarette smokers. 

A March 2015 report released by the Institution of Medicine (IOM) found that increasing the MLSA (Minimum Legal Sale Age) for tobacco products will likely prevent or delay initiation of tobacco use by adolescents and young adults. The IOM report also found that if the MLSA were raised now, the models projected that by the time today's teenagers were adults, there would be a 12% decrease in the prevalence of tobacco use. Ultimately, raising the MLSA to 21 would have a substantial positive impact on public health and save lives. 

On June 19, 2015, Hawaii became the first state to raise the tobacco sale age to 21. At least 135 localities in nine states have also raised the tobacco age to 21, including Boston, New York City and Chicago. Portland is the first municipality in Maine to do so.

Show All Answers

1. What is the new Maine State Tobacco 21 law?
2. What is the City of Portland Maine Tobacco 21 ordinance?
3. Are there any exemptions to the City ordinance?
4. What does this mean for City of Portland tobacco retailers?
5. Why did Portland pass this ordinance?
6. What is defined as a tobacco product?
7. What are electronic cigarettes?
8. Will new signage be required for Portland stores?
9. How will the new legal sales age affect age verification?
10. Is there an age requirement for sales clerks?
11. What are the penalties for a violation?
12. When does this ordinance go into effect?
13. How will this ordinance be enforced?
14. How can I see the actual ordinance?
15. What if I have questions or need more information?