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New Report: Increasing Mississippi's Cigarette Tax Will Reduce Smoking, Save Lives and Save Money
Date:6/23/2008

issippi's current cigarette tax is 17 cents per pack, the third lowest in the nation and well below the statewide average of $1.16 per pack. Since 2002, 44 states and the District of Columbia have increased their cigarette excise taxes 80 times. Twenty-six states and DC currently have cigarette tax rates of $1 per pack or higher, and 11 states have a cigarette tax rate 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. Studies show that every 10 percent increase in the price of cigarettes reduces youth smoking by about 7 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 Mississippi, and the United States as a whole. In Mississippi, tobacco use claims more than 4,700 lives each year and costs the state more than $719 million annually in health care bills, including $264 million in Medicaid payments alone. Government expenditures related to tobacco amount to a hidden tax of $561 each year on every Mississippi household. In Mississippi, 19.2 percent of high school students are still current smokers, and 4,900 more kids become regular smokers every year.

For a copy of the report, please visit: http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/pressoffice/mississippireport2008.pdf


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SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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