Former Gov. Gregoire Wants to Tax Cigarettes ANOTHER $1 Per Pack
The money would reportedly be used to pay for cancer research and prevention.
Former Governor Chris Gregoire, a breast cancer survivor, is spearheading the effort, according to the Seattle Times.
She is hoping supporters will raise the necessary 246,000 signatures necessary to place the measure on the November ballot. To do so, they have to raise them by July 3.
The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Seattle Children’s have already pledged money to support the effort. The money would be split between research, prevention, treatment and 5% to administrative costs. Research would get the bulk of the money, (60%) which is reportedly estimated could be as much as $1 billion a year.
As if Washington voters aren’t taxed enough already. While we realize smoking has been proven to be unhealthy, this isn’t about the biological argument. Yet again, bureaucrats acting in the name of “good deeds” decide it’s time to punish people for what THEY think are bad habits, by whacking them with another tax – and trying to spin it as being for a good cause.
According to the Times, the state would borrow the money “up front” by selling bonds against the anticipated tax revenue, a plan that worries State Treasurer Jim McIntire. He says it would “use debt to finance operating expenditures,” which he says is against the state’s fiscal policy.
If Gregoire is that insistent upon raising money for research, she should enlist the help of donors; we got some big ones in our state. Perhaps Boeing (the money should be tax-deductible) or Microsoft. This would be a FAR greater use of Bill Gate’s money as opposed to the growing disaster that is Common Core.
Perhaps Gregoire hasn’t noticed that tobacco tax revenue has slipped somewhat over the years, because Washington residents are buying more of it in Idaho and Oregon. Our tobacco tax is already the highest in the nation, at $3.03 per pack. Oregon’s is only $1.31, and Idaho charges only $.57 cents.