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New Report: Increasing Maryland's Cigarette Tax Will Reduce Smoking, Save Lives and Save Money
Date:10/22/2007

toward expanding access to health care for Marylanders.

If approved, the $1 increase would double Maryland's total state cigarette tax to $2 per pack. A total of 43 states and Washington, DC, have increased their cigarette taxes in recent years, and eight states currently have cigarette taxes of $2 or more.

The evidence is clear that increasing the price of cigarettes is one of the most effective ways to reduce smoking, especially among children and pregnant women. Studies show that every 10 percent increase in the price of cigarettes reduces youth smoking by about 6.5 percent and overall cigarette consumption by about 4 percent. In recent years, every state that has significantly increased its cigarette tax has enjoyed significant increases in revenue even while reducing smoking.

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death in the United States. In Maryland, tobacco use claims 6,800 lives each year and costs the state more than 1.96 billion annually in health care bills, including $476 million in Medicaid payments alone. Government expenditures related to tobacco amount to a hidden tax of $627 every year on every Maryland household. While Maryland has made progress in reducing youth smoking, 16.5 percent of Maryland high school students are still current smokers, and 6,900 more kids become smokers every year.

For a copy of the report, please visit: http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/reports/prices/Maryland_Report_10_2007.pdf


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SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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