Cullerton proposes hiking cigarette taxes by $1 a pack - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Cullerton proposes hiking cigarette taxes by $1 a pack

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WEEK) — Illinois Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago) is proposing to raise the state cigarette tax by $1 per pack.

If passed, smokers would pay $2.98 in taxes per pack. Taxes on cigars, smokeless tobacco and other tobacco products would go up to 64 percent of the wholesale price.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker previously proposed a 32-cent increase, a move expected to generate $55 million in new revenue.

“It’s rare that you can sponsor legislation and know that it will save lives. That’s exactly what this will do,” Cullerton said. “It will stop children from starting to smoke and cause many adult smokers to quit, sparing them from a lifetime of addiction and associated health problems. That’s why the public supports it.”

Cullerton said nearly 29,000 Illinois minors under 18 are expected to not begin smoking if the tax is raised, and convince 48,000 current adult smokers from dropping the habit.

The bill is supported by a variety of health advocates across the state.

The governor is also proposing a new tax on e-cigarettes, and signed a bill earlier this year raising the tobacco purchasing age to 21. 
 

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