Rep. Gordon joins House in vote to raise tobacco sales age to 21

Wicked Local Bedford

Rep. Kenneth Gordon joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives to pass legislation that seeks to reduce tobacco use and nicotine addiction among youth across the Commonwealth.

An act to protect youth from the health risks of tobacco and nicotine addiction, H.4479, will prohibit the sale of all tobacco, including nicotine delivery products and other vapor products to individuals under the age of 21. Additionally, the bill expands Massachusetts’ Smoke-Free Workplace Law to include e-cigarettes and vapes, thereby ensuring that all tobacco and vapor products will be banned in establishments where the use of traditional tobacco is currently prohibited.

More than 170 cities and towns in Massachusetts have already raised the minimum sales age for tobacco products to 21 years old. With this legislation, Massachusetts will join five other states who have established a statewide minimum sales age of 21, including California, Hawaii, Maine, New Jersey and Oregon. Needham pioneered this movement in 2005 by becoming the first municipality in the country to raise the tobacco sales age to 21.

“Plenty of research shows at 18 years old our brains may be more susceptible to addiction,” Gordon said. “I’m especially pleased this bill covers e-cigarettes or ‘vaping’ which introduces a sweet tasting and highly addictive form of nicotine attractive to young people.”

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Rep. Gordon Joins House to Pass Balanced FY19 Budget

The Bedford Citizen

Representative Ken Gordon (D-Bedford) joined his colleagues in the Massachusetts House of Representatives in passing its budget for the Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19) last week. In addition to local aid, the over $41.065 billion spending bill targets areas such as education, health and human services, housing and homelessness, and veteran services.

In addition to funding important programs and services throughout the Commonwealth, the House FY19 budget included important local aid and Chapter 70 Education funding increases for the Twenty-First Middlesex District.

“I am proud of this fiscally responsible budget that ensures our cities and towns have the resources they need to operate at the highest standard. We are once again following through on our promise to protect local aid and assistance to our schools” said Rep. Gordon.

A $15,000 allocation was included to support renovations at Burlington Council on Aging. “I am happy to see that the House budget includes funding for the Burlington Council on Aging so that Burlington can continue to provide improved services for our seniors,” said Rep. Gordon.

The House appropriated funding pursuant to another Rep. Gordon amendment, which will be used for the education of the children of military families who live on Hansom Air Force Base and attend Bedford Public Schools.  Rep. Gordon joined Senator Mike Barrett in the 2015 session to pass a law that requires the Commonwealth to reimburse the town for the education of the military students, but the law is subject to appropriation.

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