The cost of cigarettes in Mo. could be rising soon - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

The cost of cigarettes in Mo. could be rising soon

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) -

Is the price of a pack of cigarettes about to go way up in Missouri?

The tax is back on the ballot in November.

Some say Proposition B could end up costing local governments money.

Missouri's tax on a pack of cigarettes is the lowest in the country right now but if Proposition B passes that tax would jump from 17 cents to 90 cents.

It would also raise taxes on other tobacco products.

Supporters of the measure say the increase would allow the state to get back money it's lost on smoker's health care needs.

However, an association of convenience stores that analyzed the issue says a higher state tax would cut down on sales of tobacco products and therefore lower sales tax revenues for cities and counties.

Opponents say the higher tax would keep shoppers from buying other products. not only in convenience stores, but that raising the tax to 90 cents would impact the economy over all.

Estimates from the state show the tax would generate between $283 million and $423 million annually for the state. According to auditors, they aren't sure how the tax would hit local governments.

Extra tax revenue from proposition B will go towards education, including public schools, higher education and smoking prevention programs.

Similar proposals were defeated in 2002, and 2006. Again the tax goes before voters state wide November 6.

Copyright 2012 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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