Sonoma County May Establish Price Floor on Cigarettes

Smoking Man

Supervisors in Sonoma County. US state of California, are considering to adopt new anti-smoking regulations which would make it more difficult for teenagers to buy cigarettes and other tobacco products.

County health officials push an anti-smoking campaign, which imposes new licensing fees on vendors who sell tobacco products in the unincorporated area. The new regulation says that tobacco sellers should permanently increase the price for a package of cigarettes to a minimum of $7.

It will help retailers to keep the additional income and at the same time  Sonoma county would gain some additional money. It was estimated that the county would have around $140,000 annually from a total of 140 stores outside city limits. The county would use these money to pay for making inspections in stores to check how the regulation is working.

The authorities believe that the campaign is needed, because laws banning sale of tobacco products and high prices on them would help to reduce smoking rates among people younger 18.

In case  Sonoma County adopts the measure in form of a law, it would make the county the first one in California to established a price floor for cigarettes and other tobacco products. Also it would be second in the USA after New York City to adopt minimum pricing laws in order to curb teen smoking.

Serena Chen, advocacy head of the American Lung Association in California, told that there is enough evidence that tobacco retail licenses help prevent stores from selling tobacco to teeangers, and  high prices on cigarettes can help prevent teens and kids from starting to experiment with tobacco in their early age.

According to the proposed regulation, in Sonoma County tobacco retailers would have to pay for a seller’s license a sum of $1,000 annually. Brian Vaughn, a county health policy director said that up to date the ounty did less to prevent youth from smoking and now there is a perfect chance to change the situation.

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