96% of current tobacco users began using tobacco products before the age of 21.
Tobacco 21—a Springfield ordinance prohibiting tobacco and vape sales or provision to anyone under 21 years of age—goes into effect July 16, 2019.
Tobacco Use Rates
E-cigarettes (AKA vaping)
E-cigarettes contain nicotine, which is highly addictive. This can lead to mood disorders and lowering of impulse control.
63% of JUUL users did not know that the product always contains nicotine
65% of youth who use e-cigarettes reported using another tobacco product in the last 30 days
Enforcing Tobacco 21
Our goal is to provide adequate time to educate and create awareness around the new ordinance before any tickets are issued.
Can tobacco or vape accessories be sold to those under 21?
The ordinance prohibits the sale of these items to anyone under 21:
- Tobacco or tobacco products
- Pipe tobacco
- Chewing tobacco
- Dipping tobacco
- Smokeless tobacco products
- Hookah tobacco
- Cigarette papers
- Vapor products
- Any non-combustible product with or without nicotine that employs a heating element, power source, electronic circuit or other electronic, chemical means which can be used to produce vapor with or without nicotine
- Electronic cigarette
- Electronic cigar
- Electronic cigarillo
- Electronic pipe
- Any vapor cartridge or other container of nicotine in a liquid solution or other form that is intended to be used with or in an electronic cigarette
Can someone under 21 sell tobacco products?
There is no city, state or federal prohibition on the age someone can sell tobacco.
What if someone older than 21 is buying tobacco, but is at the register with someone younger than 21—does the clerk have to refuse the sale ?
There is nothing in our ordinance that pertains to the age of people around a purchase—just that a person who is purchasing tobacco or vape products must be 21.
Does this make it illegal to possess tobacco products if you are 21 or younger?
- 18-21, there is nothing in our ordinance that keeps a person from possessing tobacco or vape products (but they cannot be sold to or provided with)
- Younger than 18—cannot purchase nor possess tobacco or vape products
- HOWEVER, it is illegal for a person to provide tobacco to someone under 21
Where can I get the new required signage for tobacco and vape sales?
- New signage will be provided to retail locations soon, but is also available here: New Sales Sign
- If you wish to create your own sign, the requirements include:
- the sign must include red lettering at least one-half inch high on a white background, with this wording:
- IT IS A VIOLATION OF THE LAW FOR TOBACCO PRODUCTS, ALTERNATIVE NICOTINE PRODUCTS OR VAPOR PRODUCTS TO BE SOLD TO ANY PERSON UNDER THE AGE OF 21.
Where does this apply?
- Within in the city limits of Springfield--although there are more than 475 cities and communities and 17 statewide policies around the country and in other areas of Missouri with this ordinance as well
Will there need to be a new license for businesses selling tobacco and vape?
- If a retailer already has a tobacco permit in Springfield:
- At the time of their regular business license renewal, they will have an updated permit. There is no need to address this until the regular renewal time.
- If (like a vape shop) a retailer does not have a tobacco permit in Springfield:
- They need to work with Licensing. There will be a $5 fee. They will also be getting a letter soon with this reminder.
- If they have additional questions about occupational licenses or permits, they can speak to a representative with the city’s Licensing Department at 864-1617