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Franklin County Public Health Adding Tools to Curtail Youth Tobacco Use

Franklin County Public Health is adding a few new tools to its efforts to curtail the sale of tobacco, electronic smoking devices and vaping supplies to individuals under age 21.

Frequently Asked Questions

The agency will be providing Hilliard retailers signage to display that reminds customers that the sale of these products to youths is prohibited. The signs include a QR code and phone number (614-525-6644 ext. 2561) that people can use to report violations.

In October, Hilliard City Council approved legislation requiring existing and new retailers to apply for a tobacco retail license and pay an application fee. The legislation took effect Nov. 9. Franklin County Public Health issues the licenses and will have the authority to revoke them if a retailer violates tobacco or electronic cigarette sales laws, including selling to youths.

The City of Hilliard’s efforts are aimed at curtailing the sale of tobacco, electronic smoking devices, and vaping products to individuals under age 21. It also prohibits any new tobacco retail license from being issued to any business within 1,000 feet of a youth-oriented facility, such as schools and day cares.

Hilliard City Council approved a separate ordinance earlier in 2022 prohibiting the sale of these products to anyone under age 21.

According to data from FCPH, one in four middle school students and nearly half of all high school students have reported using an electronic vaping product. Nearly 20 percent of the high schoolers who have used these products had done so every day for the previous month.

More than one in ten high schoolers and one in 25 middle schools reported using a tobacco product in the previous month.

City Prosecutor Dawn Steele said the goal is to keep vaping and tobacco supplies out of the hands of underage people by training retailers – and by having legislation that would impact the businesses economically for violations.

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