Lubbockites React to Cigarette Tax Increase Plan - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/17/06

Lubbockites React to Cigarette Tax Increase Plan

It's about to get more expensive for smokers to keep up their habit. Right now the tax on a pack of cigarettes is 41 cents, but that is expected to change soon. As part of the school finance reform package, passed by the legislature this week, the tax on cigarettes will go up by $1.

That tax is expected to generate nearly $700 million in the first year alone. NewsChannel 11 visited a local smoke shop to find out what Lubbockites had to say about the plan.

"I think it's outrageous!"

"I don't think it's a very good idea."

"It's just wrong!"

"I don't really think it will affect anything. If you smoke you'll still buy it. I'll still pay it."

"They should tax something else besides just taking all the smokers in this state."

"We don't make that much money. Our wages don't go up every time they raise taxes."

"If it's going to education, I don't mind because I have kids of my own that could use a better education now days."

In addition to the increase to the tobacco tax, the plan also calls for a new business tax. The money will allow school districts to reduce school property taxes by about a third over the next two years. Governor Perry is expected to sign the legislation into law.

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