The Pennsylvania tobacco age laws are still in place and are expected to remain in place through 2020, even if Congress does not pass a new law.
But Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in an interview with the Associated Press that he believes the state has made strides since the ban was implemented in 2011.
Shapiro said Pennsylvania is “at a tipping point,” with some of its states still under the law.
“We’re now at a tipping moment in Pennsylvania,” he said.
“If we don’t act now, the Pennsylvania Tobacco Age will remain in effect through 2020.”
Pennsylvania Tobacco Age is the first state to impose a tax on tobacco products that has been tied to smoking.
It was implemented as part of a larger state effort to curb smoking and encourage smokers to quit.
But the new law is tied to the state’s plan to phase out the cigarette tax in 2019.
The tax was set to be phased out after 2020, but it has not been enacted.
Shapir said that while Pennsylvania has made progress, it still has a long way to go.
“I think we’re seeing a lot of states move in the same direction,” he told the AP.
“There’s still a lot to do, but we’re moving in the right direction.”
In a press release, Shapiro said the law “ensures that Pennsylvania will continue to provide the state with the revenue to keep our roads, schools and streets safe and provide opportunities for all Pennsylvanians.”
The new law, signed by Governor Tom Corbett in January, is part of an effort by the Pennsylvania Legislature to phase down tobacco use and curb smoking, as part a larger plan to reduce smoking in the state.
Shadaws goal is to reduce Pennsylvania’s smoking prevalence from 10.4 percent to less than 4 percent by 2036.
But Shapiro said he believes Pennsylvania will have a success rate of at least 10 percent by that time.
The new state law, which goes into effect in 2020, was originally proposed by the state Assembly and the Senate, and passed in 2015 by the House.
The state House passed it in March.
The legislation is also a direct response to the tobacco epidemic that began in the 1980s.
Shapiro said Pennsylvania has already seen a reduction in smoking, and the bill will help Pennsylvania keep up with the rest of the country.
“We have already seen tremendous strides and improvements in our state,” Shapiro said.