Cigarettes are getting more expensive in West Virginia.
To balance the state budget, West Virginia will raise its cigarette tax by 65 cents to $1.20 a pack starting Friday. E-cigarette and other tobacco product taxes will also increase. The hike is expected to raise $98 million annually.
The move helps fill a budget hole left by sputtering coal and low natural gas prices.
July 1 starts the budget year, and several other laws also are taking effect.
Coal and natural gas producers will get a tax break of $110 million combined. They had been paying surcharges to cover a workers’ compensation debt for years.
A right-to-work law is kicking in. New and updated collective bargaining agreements starting Friday can’t require workers to pay union dues as a condition of employment.