When the Georgia Legislature meets next week, one of the items on the agenda could be a sharp increase in the tax imposed on tobacco.  Politicians say that they want to use the funds to pay for healthcare.

State Senator Chuck Hufstetler is quote dto say that he will support the increase in taxes on cigarettes and smokeless tobacco and he wants to add the tax to vaping as well.

Hufstetler, who represents a portion of Floyd and Chattooga Counties said, “There’s a report from the Surgeon General that says e-cigarettes are reaching epidemic proportions in our high schools. We need to address that.”

Hufstetler said that a higher tax would deter people from starting the habit, and raise money to deal with the healthcare cost. He cited a Georgia Budget & Policy Institute report that says a $1 increase per pack would raise more than $400 million a year.

The increase being proposed would increase taxes on tobacco products from .37 cents to $1.87.

From AM 1180