SPRINGFIELD, Mo.– A local lawmaker is working to put more restrictions on the sale of tobacco and vaping products in the state of Missouri.

“I don’t think there’s much argument in saying they are not sold as an alternative to tobacco products,” said State Senator Lincoln Hough. “What this legislation also seeks to do is find a definition for vaping products and put them under the umbrella of tobacco.”

If Senate Bill 124 passes, it would raise the legal age to purchase vapor products from 18 to 21. Hough said he filed this bill because students have expressed their concerns about vaping products.

“The thing that sparked my interest was some students, actually, had emailed my office and said ‘Why are these products treated differently than regular products? A lot of our friends are using this and they’re saying it’s not like smoking'”, said Hough. “The health implications associated with getting started on a vaping product at a young age can be very detrimental to one.”

The bill would also initiate a registration process for tobacco retailers.

“While researching the initial portion of the bill, I found out that there is actually no registration process for retailers that sell tobacco products,” said Hough. “We actually, as a state, do not know if a retailer sells tobacco products or not. It’s amazing to me that we have laws in the books associated with these products, but we don’t actually know who sells them.”

Even though there is some opposition to the initial $50 fee for retailers to register, Hough stated Senate Bill 124 received positive feedback.