Thanks to a tax that was added to, of all measures, the Federal Transportation Bill,  roll-you-own tobacco stores could become a thing of the past across America - including the Mid-Columbia.

A Franklin County Judge ruled against the state recently when they tried to push through taxes that would raise prices of roll-your-own products to the levels of "regular" cigarettes.   Owners of roll-your-own stores say the taxes would likely drive them out of business.

 It's a complicated process, but for years such shops as 1/2 price smokes have not faced the same tax rates as the "big" tobacco companies because they did not sell premade tobacco products.  Roll-your-own shops manufacture the cigarettes in-house, using tobacco and paper.   For years the Feds, and State, have been trying to find ways to tax these stores, and the Federal tax was inserted into the Transportation Bill.

  In layman's terms,  these stores, if Obama signs the bill into law, will be taxed at the same rate as such giants as R.J. Reynolds.   Some stores in the Mid-Columbia have already laid people off in preparation for the tax, as it is expected Obama will sign it.