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Lawmakers advance Wyoming bill increasing smoking age to 21

Wyoming lawmakers have voted to advance a bill raising the state minimum age to purchase tobacco products to 21 years.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports that lawmakers aim to limit minors’ access to tobacco products, including cigarettes, cigars, chewable tobacco and nicotine-infused vapor products.

Officials say the bill was one of several being considered by lawmakers Wednesday, but it also requires approval of the full Legislature.

State lawmakers say currently people age 18 and older are allowed to purchase tobacco products.

Officials say 18 states have risen their minimum smoking age to 21 with some exemptions for military members.

Officials say enforcing existing laws and a higher purchase age could be effective at discouraging young people from purchasing products illegally.

Officials say 95% of smokers start before the age of 21.

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