ELK GROVE VILLAGE, Ill. - Tobacco sales could soon go up in smoke in northwest suburban Elk Grove Village. The plan under consideration by the Village Board of Trustees to ban those sales is stirring up a lot of discussion.
Not a single city in the county has dared to take on the discussion about highly taxed and vilified tobacco products which could be cut from behind the counters of all stores in the village.
"That would close our gas station down, for good," said Imtiaz Mamon, BP gas station owner.
"I don't think it's a viable option right now. People want to smoke, they get it from other places, order it from the internet, get from out of town," said Manahar Patel, Lively Liquor.
The idea, originally proposed 10 years ago, came from Mayor Craig Johnson.
"Tobacco products are the only products sold in America that if you use as directed is guaranteed to harm you. That's something we need to look at closely," Johnson said.
"From a public health standpoint, raising the age to 21 would probably make more sense," said Rob Pickett, resident of Elk Grove Village.
Raising the legal age to purchase tobacco is another, less controversial proposal that is also on the table. But the mayor is pushing for putting out cigarette and tobacco sales for good.
"It's something that's been punted for good because the government loves tax dollars on tobacco products," Johnson said.
A committee for the Elk Grove Village Board will bring the plan up for public discussion at their Dec. 13 meeting.