Education, Public Health Organizations & Others Join Calls for $1 Cigarette Tax Hike

WV Metro News - An increase of at least $1 to the state tax on a pack of cigarettes could make the difference for West Virginia's physical and fiscal health, according to representatives from a coalition of West Virginia education, public health and faith-based community organizations. Read

As state budget talks continue, those groups came together Thursday at Charleston's Appalachian Power Park to call on lawmakers to move forward with stalled tobacco tax increase proposals, including hikes to taxes on cigarettes, smokeless tobacco products and, for the first time, electronic cigarettes.

Joining them was Brooke Drake, a smoker from Charleston.

"We clearly need the tax revenue, but a significant increase in tobacco prices will actually be a service to the people that you are taxing and that's really what we should focus on. We are helping them, not just looking to fill in a few cracks in our budget," she said.

"A dollar or more is absolutely necessary."

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