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Proponents Of Tobacco Tax To Try Again In 2016

File / Charles Rex Arbogast /AP
 

File / Charles Rex Arbogast /AP

Backers of raising California’s tax on tobacco products say they’ll try again – two years after voters narrowly rejected Proposition 29.

They’re hoping the Legislature will approve a new $2 per pack tobacco tax. If that fails, they’re planning another ballot measure for November 2016.

Terry Brennand with the Service Employees International Union says this tobacco tax push will be broader and better coordinated than previous attempts.

"You’ve had, in the past, smaller efforts," says Brennand. "And this is – you’ve never seen anything like this before. (pause) You haven’t.” 

Tobacco company Altria says the tax would be unfair to adult consumers and encourage smuggling. It also argues the tax would make California’s finances less stable – because the number of smokers would decline.

 

 tobacco

Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio