CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A proposal to keep minors from using electronic cigarettes passed the West Virginia House of Delegates.
The legislation would outlaw the sale of vapor-based e-cigarettes and other alternative nicotine products to children under 18. The bill covers toothpicks, lozenges, and other non-tobacco products that are chewed, absorbed or otherwise ingested.
Selling the items to minors would be a misdemeanor punishable by up to $100 in fines, and up to $500 for multiple infractions.
Children who illegally smoke, chew or otherwise use the products could be fined $50 and serve eight hours' community service. Penalties can increase in subsequent offenses.
The battery-powered e-cigarettes let smokers take aerosol puffs usually containing nicotine. Flavors range from chocolate to bubble gum.
The House cleared the proposal Thursday. The Senate will consider it next.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)