Friday, January 20, 2012

Proposal: Tax Smokers and Cut the Car Tax in Half

New York's cigarette taxes are first, Virginia's are 50th.
Here's a tax cut we all can love--well, most of us; we'll except those who love smoking.  Delegate Patrick Hope of Arlington, a Democrat, has proposed that cutting the car tax in Virginia by half is workable if we will simply raise the tax on smoking and return that to the taxpayers.

This will give us the opportunity to see just how strong the tobacco lobby remains (and my guess is that with all the bribery money it gives our legislators, it's pretty strong) in the face of constant setbacks. Hope says we'd not only save money, but we'd save lives. Smoking kills 400,000 Americans every year and god only knows how many people worldwide die from it, especially in those countries where people smoke like we did in the 1950s.

Says Hope, "We need a shot in the arm for Virginia’s economy. I think working families are demanding it.” He adds (in a story on WVTF Public Radio this a.m.), “We rank 50th in the nation in funding in cigarette and tobacco tax. And what this would do is bring our cigarette and tobacco tax to just the national average. And the residual of those funds, which would raise about $300 million , would be directly applied to the car tax. It would give real Virginia families real relief when they need it the most.”

The tax on a pack of cigarettes would go to $1.45 a pack and it would increase to 50 percent of the wholesale price of other tobacco products.


1 comment:

  1. This would be an opportune time to mention to those people who still smoke cigarettes but would like to quit, that e-cigarettes are a fabulous option - at least they have been for me.