House to Tackle Proposed Cigarette Tax Hike

SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois House will tackle a proposal that would boost the tax on a pack of cigarettes from 98 cents to 1-dollar-98-cents.Kathy Drea with the American Lung Association says the money from the cigarette tax would go towards healthcare providers throughout the state.

But lawmakers with border districts are concerned that a statewide tax hike will drive smokers to other states. Quad-Cities Democrat Pat Verschoore says a tax increase could hurt convenience stores and gas stations in his area.

Lawmakers don't know specifically when they may vote on the cigarette tax proposal.

By Kevin Lee Illinois Statehouse News

Governor Quinn is considering supporting a one dollar hike on cigarette taxes. He says the money could help prevent deep cuts in education spending.

The Illinois house is tackling a proposal right now. it would boost the tax on a pack of cigarettes.. from 98 cents to $1.98. Governor Quinn says that a budget built around cigarette taxes and borrowed money to avoid $1.3 Billion in education cuts is quote "Getting in the Right Direction." lawmakers are in Springfield for what could be the final week of the spring session.

There is still no agreement on a budget that fixes the state's $13 Billion dollar deficit. Quinn says he'll call lawmakers back to Springfield right away if they adjourn without properly funding education.

Do you think a $1 tax increase on cigarettes is a good way to help balance the state budget?

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