A New Urge for Tax Hike on Cigars & Smokeless Tobacco

Local legislators established a new legislation which will impose a 60 percent tax raise on cigars and smokeless tobacco.

The bill creator is the state Rep. Eugene DePasquale, D-York City, and this is the first time state tax on cigars, pipe tobacco, hand rolling cigarettes, snuff and chewing tobacco.

Tax Hike on Cigars

This legislation which raised the cigars and smokeless tobacco prices was proposed during Pennsylvania’s budget process starting with last year but unfortunately failed to approve it by the Senate.

Mr. DePasquale hops that this legislation will get through in this year. “Approximately all the countries other than Pennsylvania has approved such an ordinance,” he said.

DePasquale also added that such legislation would help to provide much necessary income for the state and even will conduct some people to quit smoking because high cost of tobacco products.

60 percent tax raise on tobacco products would be added on to the price that retailers pay to wholesalers or manufacturers, even though DePasquale concedes that at least some of the tax would be passed on to tobacco consumers.

So this new anti-tobacco legislation would generate an approximately $41.6 million yearly. And all the money would go into the state’s fund, permitting it to be used for any goal and intention.

DePasquale’s bill would immediately direct $10 million of the extra state revenue to supply cervical and breast cancer screening. And another $5 million would go immediate to tobacco cessation programs.

But the Sen. Lloyd Smucker opposes the new tax hike because of the possible influence on tobacco farmers in his region.

“There are many farmers in my district who depend on tobacco as a cash crop. There is a concern on their end a tobacco tax would have an influence on the industry and would impact that source of income for them. I think it’s a lawful concern,” reported Mr. Smucker.

So, new tobacco tax could decrease the smokers smoking demand, which in turn could increase the prices that farmers are capable to get for their tobacco products.

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