E-Cig Ban for Minors Headed to Virginia House of Delegates

Bill in Richmond would allow state to regulate electronic cigarettes the same way it regulates traditional tobacco products.

A Virginia lawmaker wants to ban the sell of electronic cigarettes to minors. (Patch File Photo)
A Virginia lawmaker wants to ban the sell of electronic cigarettes to minors. (Patch File Photo)
By Jason Spencer

Should children have access to electronic cigarettes?

In Virginia, they do. But a state delegate out of Loudoun County has filed a bill in Richmond that, if approved, would prohibit the sell of "e-cigs" to minors.

Attorneys general in 40 states — a number that doesn't include Virginia's Ken Cuccinelli — have asked the federal government to regulate electronic cigarettes and to stop the companies that make them from advertising to young people.

But a bill filed by state Del. David Ramadan (R-South Riding) would allow Virginia to regulate e-cigarettes the same way it does traditional tobacco products.

Ramadan's bill would make it a crime to sell, distribute to or purchase electronic cigarettes for anyone under 18 years old.

Violators would face a penalty of up to $100 for their first offense, up to $200 for a second offense and up to $500 for third and subsequent offenses.

Minors who purchase or attempt to purchase e-cigs could face a penalty of up to $100 or 20 hours of community service for their first offense or up to $250 or 40 hours of community service for second and subsequent offenses.

Ramadan's proposed changes to state law would also require businesses that sell electronic cigarettes to post signs indicating that they cannot be bought by those under 18, similar to signs posted at establishments that sell traditional cigarettes.

More on Bills Headed to the 2014 Virginia General Assembly:

Do you think it should be against the law to sell e-cigarettes to minors? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.


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