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NYC council votes to make tobacco-buying age 21

NEW YORK (AP) - Smokers under 21 will soon be barred from buying cigarettes in New York City.

The City Council voted Wednesday to raise the minimum age for purchasing cigarettes and electronic-vapor cigarettes from 18 to 21.

By passing the bill, New York became the most populous place in the U.S. to raise the tobacco-buying age that high.

The city's current age limit of 18 is a federal minimum. It's standard in many places.

Some states and communities have raised the age to 19. At least two towns have agreed to raise it to 21.

Advocates say higher age limits help prevent young people from taking up a hazardous habit.

Manufacturers have suggested young adult smokers may just turn to black-market merchants.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg's administration supports the council's plan.

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