BROOKLYN - Council Speaker Christine Quinn and City Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley today announced a bill that would raise the legal age to buy tobacco in New York City from 18 to 21 years old.

Quinn says many smokers start before they are 21, so having a higher minimum age to buy tobacco products will make it more difficult for teens to pick up the habit.

Some cities have raised the minimum age to buy tobacco to 19. Lawmakers in Texas recently tried to increase the age to 21, but it did not pass. If the bill passes, New York City would have the highest minimum age to buy tobacco products.