Quite an impressive Assembly Bill 985 was introduced on Tuesday and would implement what’s called a phased ban on tobacco products extensively in California. People must be 21 years of age in order to buy tobacco products in California currently. However, if approved AB 935 would ban anyone born on January 1, 2007, and later from buying tobacco at all. several people told me — they’re not a fan.
“I think if somebody wants to purchase tobacco products they should be allowed to do it, it’s one of their personal freedoms,” Michael Finkbiner said. One mother with a 6-year-old said she thinks the bill would be better for people’s health long-term. “Tobacco doesn’t have any benefits for society. It’s just kind of something that people should steer away from and I think having laws in place that keep people from going in that direction is probably best for everybody,” she said.
The bill comes just months after a flavored tobacco ban went into effect in California. Some smoke shops report losing lost about $1,000 TO $2,000 in profit since then but said many customers are now turning to other products. “We’ve had more people come in for actual smokes or we’ve just had a lot more glass selling whether it be actual water pipes or oil burners,” Cigarette City employee Samantha Blake said.
Blake said many shops have adjusted but that another ban could change the industry forever. “I’d say it would be a negative impact on California with how much tax money, in general, they’re losing. This is just one small local store and there are so many other pure vape shops and pure shops in town that I know had to fully shut down,” Blake said. The bill has not been assigned to a committee yet but that could change as soon as March 17.