Missouri Board of Education Wants Tobacco Tax Increased

JEFFERSON CITY, MO. (AP) – Illinois Governor Quinn just recently signed a bill adding a dollar tax on a pack of cigarettes and now it looks like there is backing for a potential November ballot initiative asking Missouri voters to raise tobacco taxes.

The State Board of Education voted Tuesday to support a plan that would raise Missouri’s lowest-in-the-nation cigarette tax from 17 cents per pack to 90 cents beginning January. Its estimated the initiative would generate between $283 million and $423 million annually. 80 % of the money would go to education with the remaining 20 percent would go to smoking cessation efforts.

The secretary of state’s office is counting petition signatures to see if there are enough to qualify the measure for the ballot.

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