Tobacco Tax Bill Dies in House Finance

Mar 3, 2016

A bill to raise the state’s tobacco tax was approved by Senators earlier in the session and made its first appearance in a House Committee Thursday.

 

Delegates on the Finance Committee took up the bill Thursday morning and continued their discussions that afternoon.

 

Delegates continued their consideration of Senate Bill 420 for almost two hours voting on a few amendments, but in the end, the committee killed the bill.

 

The bill was presented on behalf of Governor Tomblin and originally included a 45 cent tax increase on each pack of cigarettes. As it passed the Senate, the bill bumped that tax up to a dollar.

The House Finance Committee adopted an amendment to the bill Thursday afternoon reducing the tax once again to the 45 cent per-pack rate as well as two other amendments.

One removed the tax hike for all other tobacco products- leaving only a tax increase for cigarettes. The second removed the tax for e-cigarette liquids.

After the amendments were adopted, only three members of the committee voted in favor of the bill. House Chairman Eric Nelson voted against it.