Las Vegas Sun

January 30, 2015

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Bill aims to squash cigarette smoking by teens

A bill to clamp down on teenage smokers has been introduced by Sen. James Settelmeyer, who says students at middle and high schools are puffing cigarettes off campus without penalties.

It’s illegal for anyone under 18 years old to buy cigarettes or other tobacco products. But there’s no penalty in Nevada for those ages 14 to 18 to smoke or possess tobacco, says Settelmeyer, R-Minden.

Under SB177, a person who lies about his or her age to buy cigarettes or other tobacco products or even possesses them would be subject to a $25 fine for the first offense. A second offense carries a $50 fine and the third offense a $75 penalty.

The bill says that for the fourth offense, the judge may impose the $75 fine and order the juvenile to attend a smoking cessation program. But the judge has the discretion to waive the penalties.

“Kids are not supposed to smoke and there should be some consequences,” says Settelmeyer, who has 11 co-sponsors.

The penalty would not apply to a juvenile who is handling or transporting tobacco products in the presence of their parents or in the course of their job.

In addition to the fines, there could be a $10 administrative fee imposed.

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  1. Another feel good law.

    Who is going to enforce it? Not a one of our departments has the man power to becoming the smoking cops.

  2. I was in a stink hole casino tonight, and at least half of the women at the slots were puffing away. Not so many guys. What a sad addiction, that starts when they are teenagers. The problem is that the smoke affects me, and think about the beer tenders breathing in the smoke for 8 hours. We live in butt fiend Hell.

  3. I read a medical study that concluded that it is more difficult for women to quit smoking, more difficult than quitting heroin and cocaine.

    The best thing is not to start smoking.

    As a result, I have to agree with efforts to discourage young people from starting an addictive habit.

    That said, anything that makes smoking more attractive will only be partially effective, like laws that carry a penalty. Teens love to press their luck and be rebellious. It is a difficult issue, especially with peer pressure and being cool so important.

    Discipline is not always effect in homes where there is alot of demanding, screaming, and other penalties.

    I think the best thing is for parents to create a solid family life where lots of love expressed, and responsibility and trust taught.

    It is up to parents to talk to their kids and explain why smoking is addictive and harmful, and that it is not cool to let others pressure kids into smoking.

    Open, respectful, and trusting dialogue is positive in a healthy family.

    It is important to create independent leaders who have self-respect, strength of character, and empowerment to choose the lifestyles that will enhance their health and opportunities in life.

    Parents are the example and the foundation upon which children grow and learn the significant values of life. Unfortunately, many parents don't seem to understand their important role.