KCUR News
11:43 am
Tue September 20, 2011

Proposal Could Raise State Cigarette Tax to Nearly a Dollar

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The American Cancer Society has filed a ballot proposal with the secretary of state's office to raise Missouri's cigarette tax to 90 cents a pack.

Missouri currently has the lowest cigarette tax in the country at 17 cents a pack.

Misty Snodgrass with the American Cancer Society's Missouri chapter said a higher tax is needed to fund smoking cessation and education programs.

"Missouri receives zero dollars for tobacco prevention and education," said Snodgrass. "And so this would provide critical funding at CDC recommended levels to help Missourians quit."

Similar tax proposals failed in popular votes in 2002 and 2006.

Supporters of this new one must get about 100,000 signatures to put the measure on next November's ballot.

Another cigarette tax petition that would only raise the tax on small tobacco companies has already been approved for circulation, but it does not have the backing of the American Cancer Society.

-----------------

Find more Health Coverage on KCUR.

Download recent health stories or subscribe to the KCUR Health Podcast.

Follow KCUR health news on Twitter or become a KCUR fan on Facebook.