KEYC - North Mankato City Council Discuses Proposed Ordinance For Tobac

North Mankato City Council Discuses Proposed Ordinance For Tobacco Purchasing Age

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The proposed North Mankato ordinance changes the age limit on purchasing tobacco–related items from 18 to 21.

North Mankato Mayor Mark Dehen says, "The idea of raising the age of tobacco sales is basically a health and wellness for our children idea. The statistics state that most people will not start smoking if they don't start until after age 21."

The council discussed the ordinance in further detail at today's work session.

North Mankato City Council Member, Diane Norland is in favor.

North Mankato City Council Member Diane Norland says, "I have worked in the addiction and prevention field for many, many years and we know from many many years that people who start using alcohol, tobacco any of those drugs very young that they're much more likely to get into much more trouble and or become addicted."

However, Bob Freyberg is opposed... saying if you can fight for our country at the age of 18 you should have the freedom of choice for using tobacco.

North Mankato City Council Member Bob Freyberg says, "I don't feel comfortable with a local community trying to sanitize my lifestyle. We all know it's not a good thing but at the same time it is our choice."

The council came to a decision to add it to the next agenda for a public hearing for the first meeting in August.

Mayor Dehen says that will also allow them to clarify the ordinance with the city of Mankato.

Dehen says, "North Mankato is simply about raising the age to purchase tobacco related items versus Mankato's that included criminalizing possession to those between the ages 18 to 21 which is not something that the city of north Mankato is interested in."

The next agenda is set for August 7th.

--KEYC News 12