NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The Northampton Board of Health voted down a proposal that would have placed a restriction on the sale of tobacco products.
The board of health voted 3 to 1 against restricting convenience stores from selling cigarettes and other tobacco products.
This decision was one of several tobacco-related policy proposals voted down by the board of health last Thursday. They also chose to not restrict the sale of vaping products to only adult stores and reduce the current cap on tobacco sale permits.
Northampton Board of Health Director, Meredith O’Leary, told 22News they were concerned with the economic impact the restrictions would have had on small businesses.
“In the time of big business, I think the little guys would suffer,” resident Eric Downing expressed. “I think people should have the right to buy tobacco products if they so choose.”
O’ Leary said the proposals were intended to help protect children by limiting their exposure to tobacco and vaping products. Board members also took into account Governor Charlie Baker’s recent vaping legislation.
22News spoke with owners of Northampton convenience stores that sell cigarettes. They said they were pleased with the Board of Health decision.