Raising the purchasing age for tobacco to 21 is gaining attention this month as both cities in the metro will hold meetings on the issue.

North Mankato has approved holding a public hearing on January 16 at 7 p.m. to discuss the issue.

North Mankato City Administrator John Harrenstein.

City Administrator John Harrenstein says it is yet to be determined if the council will adopt new regulations at that time, as he has offered no recommendation on the matter.

Harrenstein added that he doesn’t believe that local businesses are in favor of the proposal.

“There have been some that have contacted us. I don’t know if that means all convenience store owners though. But, I can say in general we have heard from convenience store owners that they have concerns about it.”

Monday night the Mankato City Council will consider setting a public hearing for January 22 to discuss amending the purchasing age from 18 to 21.

At an intergovernmental meeting in November, Officials from Mankato and North Mankato agreed that if one body chooses to not move forward with a public hearing, the other city would void the proposed ordinance change.