Archive for Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tax on cigarettes to increase Wednesday

Get ready to pay more at the cash register. The Lawrence sales tax will increase on Wednesday.

March 31, 2009


For Andrew Imel, a 62-cent tax increase on every pack of cigarettes isn’t going to curb his habit.

“I don’t think it’s that big of a deal,” Imel said Tuesday, following a tobacco purchase at a Lawrence gasoline station.

The single largest federal tobacco tax increase ever takes effect today. A pack of smokes in Lawrence now costs between $4 and $8 a pack, after the federal tax increased from 39 cents to $1.01 per pack.

Medical groups see a tax increase right in the middle of a recession as a great incentive to help persuade smokers to quit.

The major cigarette makers actually raised prices a couple of weeks ago to offset any drop in profits from the new tax.

But so far, the increase has had little impact on cigarette sales in Lawrence, said Don Murphy, of Louisiana Amoco BP, 2301 La.

“People are still buying,” said Murphy, a smoker himself. “You can’t give up everything.”

Tobacco taxes are soaring to finance a major expansion of health insurance for children.

Other tobacco products, from cigars to pipe and smokeless tobacco, will see similarly large tax increases, too.

Despite a 40-cent increase in tax for most cigars, only time will tell how it affects business, said Rich Spangler, owner of Centro Cigars at Bob Billings Parkway and Wakarusa Drive.

“It will affect, we just don’t know to what extent,” Spangler said.

The Associated Press contributed to this story


Brent Fry 8 years, 11 months ago

It's a dirty habit. I've never been able to comprehend how anyone smokes a cigarette for the first time and thinks, "wow, that was awesome...I think I'll do that again, and again, and again."

justsomedude 8 years, 11 months ago

i would like to see them tax booze in this town like this,see how everyone else likes it

Chris Ogle 8 years, 11 months ago

CMM - it is more than a dirty habit. For some of us, it is an addiction, like compulsive gambling, and drug addiction. I quit for 14 years.... then one day decided to have a guessed it... being in denial concerning my cigg addiction, I am hooked again. .... damn it. .

dweezil222 8 years, 11 months ago

Once the tax goes high enough, people will just figure out how to grow their own tobacco.

RoeDapple 8 years, 11 months ago

When Winstons hit 35 cents / pack I said "No more!"

lionheart72661 8 years, 11 months ago

xbusguy (Anonymous) says…

CMM - it is more than a dirty habit. For some of us, it is an addiction, like compulsive gambling, and drug addiction. I quit for 14 years…. then one day decided to have a cigar…….you guessed it… being in denial concerning my cigg addiction, I am hooked again. …. damn it.

I agree with you This is B.S. I don't smoke my g/f does but i buy them for her i was irate that they went up 2 weeks ago. This is the 4th time in 2 months they've raised the prices. If it isn't the cost of oil it's the cost of smokes.Tax booze is a great idea, i've been saying that for a while i don't drink anymore but even if i did i would back a booze tax. Another way to get the shaft from good ol' uncle sam.

lionheart72661 8 years, 11 months ago

Another thing it is an addiction and people won't quit smoking they will find new ways to get more money to get their smokes... Hmmm let's see i see more cigarette bandits popping up. there is an article in the paper "ARE you concerned about the rise in violence in Lawrence"? Just like any addict smokers will do what it takes to get their smoke on.

Random56 8 years, 11 months ago

I thought our taxes wouldn't go up under the new administration? This sounds like anouther sneaky way to tax more, kinda like cap and trade, everyones electric bill will go up because the electric co. will pass their taxes to the consumer.

terrapin2 8 years, 11 months ago

Justsomedude, You do realize that the State already imposes liquor taxes on all alcoholic beverages sold within the state and a portion of that tax revenue is funneled back to Lawrence for treatment, law enforcement, etc, right?

From the KS Dept of Revenue website: Liquor Drink Tax. This tax is collected on the retail sale of drinks containing alcoholic liquor. The tax rate is 10%.

Are you suggesting the State double the existing liquor tax? I for one would be against that because the beer and wine that I buy is already expensive enough as it is!

jayhawks71 8 years, 11 months ago

Marion prefers the "charge it and spend" GOP.

Whatever happened to the GOP being the party of political and fiscal conservativism? One day the moral right got a wild idea to push their agenda and convinced some people that if they were old-school conservatives, they were also new-age conservatives (aka neocons). The moral right is all about using government to push their agenda--so much for being the party of minimal government.

BigPrune 8 years, 11 months ago

At least Obama is getting his cigs paid for by the citizens of this country.

Reuben Turner 8 years, 11 months ago

im so glad that i tried it and didn't like it.

Tom McCune 8 years, 11 months ago

Remember when they were 25 cents in the vending machines? (And the vending machines were everywhere.)

I'm not particularly afraid of dying but, given any choice in the matter, I don't want lung cancer. I've known too many people who died like that and it was a long, awful experience every time. Almost anything would be better than that. Shot by a jealous husband, OK. Run over by a truck, OK. Please, God, when the time comes, don't even let me know what hit me. I don't want to spend 2 years drowning in my own precious bodily fluids, like my uncles and grandmother.

pissedinlawrence 8 years, 11 months ago

Thank god I have about 600 cartons of cigs stored in my basement.

igby 8 years, 11 months ago

The black markets will be booming business! Many new jobs for drivers. They will have a dial-up and home delivery soon just like dope!

justsomedude 8 years, 11 months ago

they should double the tax on booze help pay for these sort of things

Clare Galloway 8 years, 11 months ago

we tried the roll your own, bought them at the smoke shop on 23rd and really you save a lot of money you just have get used to using the little machine, they are like regular ciggs.

lionheart72661 8 years, 11 months ago

Terrapin2, 10% is nothing. Do you realize that taxes on smokes are far greater than 10%. I don't know the exact figure but if the raise the taxes .62 cents when i was buying a carton for $44 now that is going up 6.20 a cartom that is more that 10% (this time) like i stated earlier this is the 4th time in 2 months they have raised the price. When is the last time thay raised the price on booze. Here is an idea make the sin tax equal. And remember all of you political folks out there when Democrats get into office there is no such thing as "NO" new taxes. Congress wil ream us somehow.

Sharon Aikins 8 years, 11 months ago

Those that don't smoke can giggle and claim their self-righteousness while they lift their glasses in a toast. But , hey, alcohol kills quicker, that's a plus. All these "sin" taxes by the morally upright makes me wonder what they do in the closet. Is one just a bigger sin than the other? I don't get it. But then, I don't buy either and still find this a crock.

Linda Aikins 8 years, 11 months ago

MD, you've really lost some important people. How do you say so chipper and bubbly? My hat's off to you.

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