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Oregon Will Have Highest Cigarette Tax in the Nation
Smoke ’em, if you can afford ’em.

A series of increases in the taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products and a new tax on inhalant delivery products, approved by Oregon voters in November, will go into effect January 1, 2021. These are the first of what are expected to be many tax increases enacted by the Oregon Legislature in the upcoming session to backfill holes left by revenue shortfalls due to the COVID-19 recession.

As a result of the passage of Measure 108, which was placed on the November ballot by the Legislature by HB 2270, consumers will see the following: Revenue produced by the tax changes will be used by the Oregon Health Authority to fund health care coverage for low-income families, including mental health services, and public health programs, including programs addressing tobacco- and nicotine-related disease. Critics of the tax have pointed out that this is an unstable source of continuing revenue and put the state in a position of having to deliver expected services in the future.

The bill, supported mostly by Democrats, was placed on the ballot during the 2019 session. The current tax on cigarettes is $3.33. After the increase, the tax will be $5.33, which will make Oregon's cigarette tax the highest in the nation.

Photo by Luka Malic on Unsplash

--Staff Reports

Post Date: 2020-12-29 14:58:17Last Update: 2020-12-29 15:24:02

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