14 Illinois counties, including the city of Chicago, have adopted measures to move the smoking age from 18 to 21.

I may be a little presumptuous in saying this but I believe the state of Illinois is going to be making that same change statewide soon.

The pressure is on.

NBC Chicago reports that 14 Illinois counties, as well as Chicago, have already "adopted local ordinances setting the age at 21."

To see the counties and all other states  who have taken on changing the age limit to 21, click here.

In the meantime,downstate in Springfield yesterday, "the Senate Public Health Committee voted 6-2 to prohibit the sale of tobacco or related products to anyone under 21." Also on Tuesday, the "House committee voted 3-1 Tuesday to advance an identical proposal. Each goes to the floors of their respective chambers for consideration."

I could be wrong but to me it looks like the age limit changing to 21 to smoke is on it's way to being a statewide law.

Don't you think so?

By the way, if this measure passes and becomes state law it will prohibit the sales of "cigarettes, cigars, snuff and chew, and nicotine-based products such as e-cigarettes or vaping materials" to any under the age of 21.

The hope of increasing the age limit to 21 from 18 is that it "would prevent teenagers from forming a deadly habit."

As statistics from the American Lung Associations shows that "ninety-five percent of long-term smokers start before they turn 21,"and "therefore, if a person does not start smoking before the age of 21, it is overwhelmingly likely that they never will."

Well that makes sense but will it be effective?

Some opponents are saying that this move of changing the age limit will hurt small businesses. As "potential customers would "just cross the borders" into other states to buy tobacco."

Plus, they say it sends the wrong message to those under the age of 21 because, "while buying tobacco under 21 would be barred, underage possession would not be penalized."

State law now says that those caught under 18 with cigarettes are fined $25 "for a first violation." However, "Chief sponsor Sen. Julie Morrison, a Democrat from Deerfield, said the penalties are rarely enforced."

That's a good point to.

I guess now we'll just have to wait and see.



More From Rockford's New Country Q98.5