Lafayette business owner reacts to proposed smoking age increase

Representative Frank Hoffman of West Monroe wants to raise the state’s smoking age from 18 to 21.

Only California and Hawaii have raised the age to 21 so far, but that could change.

This Spring, he wrote a resolution for the Louisiana Department of Health to consider changing the state’s smoking age.

“It’s a resolution for us to study to see the possibilities, of if it would be a good idea to raise the smoking age to 21.,” he said.

According to USA TODAY, Louisiana ranks 43rd in the country, where 21.9 percent of the population smokes.

“I really believe it would be fewer people who would actually ever start smoking, if you couldn’t start till you’re 21 years old,” said Hoffman.

Brad LeBlanc, owner of FTJ Vapes, says he wouldn’t mind seeing the smoking age go up to 21.

“When you turn 18, you’re at legal age to do what you want. So if they want to do it they can do it. I personally feel they shouldn’t. I feel the age should be 21 or higher. I don’t think smoking is healthy,” he said.

LeBlanc believes that 18-year-olds should still be able to buy vaping products, as changing that law would affect business.

“It definitely would, because we do have a lot of people in that range from 18 to 21 that come in on a daily basis. So I think it would affect our business,” he siad.

This bill won’t be addressed until the next regular legislative session, in the Spring of 2018. Representative Hoffman hopes the study will be done a month before the session starts.

 

 

 

 

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