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N.J. lawmakers vote to raise age to buy cigarettes from 19 to 21 (Susan K. Livio, NJ Advance Media for NJ.com)

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According to a January 7, 2016 NJ Advance Media article, forgoing sales tax revenue for public health, a state Assembly panel Thursday approved a bill that would raise the age to buy tobacco and electronic cigarettes in New Jersey from 19 to 21.

The Assembly Appropriations Committee voted 6-3 to pass the bill, which will be on the full Assembly’s agenda for a final vote Monday. The bill, which has passed the Senate, would need Gov. Chris Christie‘s signature to make it law.

An analysis by the non-partisan Office of Legislative Services last year concluded the legislation would cost New Jersey $19 million in tax revenue the first year the law is on the books. A newer estimate discussed at the hearing pegged the loss of revenue at a maximum of $16.2 million.

But Robert Crane, a professor of family medicine at Ohio State University and president of the Preventing Tobacco Addiction Foundation, said New Jersey would lose about $3 million a year initially based on federal estimates.

Read the full NJ Avance Media for NJ. com article.