January 17, 2009 - A number of states are facing shortfalls in their budgets for fiscal year 2009. Michael Leavitt, Secretary of Health and Human Services in the Bush Administration tells us, "Tobacco products are not safe and cannot be made safe and there is no medically established public health benefit associated with tobacco."
State governments should feel obligated to continue to raise the tax on cigarette products to convince smokers to quit, prevent people like youngsters from starting and to raise money to reduce the shortfall they will continue to experience. (States Need Quick Influx of Revenue – Think Tobacco Tax..; Tax the hell out of all tobacco products until they disappear..)
Illinois Also - Lawmaker wants smoke tax to go up, Kevin Lee, Springfield Bureau, The Times, 1/16/2009.
Mississippi Also - Advocates support new tax on cigarettes.
Kentucky Also - Kentucky considering increase in cigarette tax..; Cigarette Tax Increase Gets Support From Unlikely Source; Ky. governor hopeful lawmakers can balance budget.
Georgia Also - Georgia Lawmaker Proposes Cigarette Tax Increase; Fight to increase cigarette tax kicks off
Bill would hike price $1 a pack; congressional leaders want to cut spending instead.
Arkansas Also - Cigarette Tax Main Issue At Forum.
Other recent announcements: Virginia, South Carolina, Utah.