Cigarette tax hike rejected by House committee
BATON ROUGE- A proposal to raise Louisiana's cigarette tax has been rejected by lawmakers.
The House Ways and Means Committee voted 11-7 against the bill by Monroe Rep. Katrina Jackson to raise the current 36-cent per pack tax to 68 cents.
Jackson's proposal would have let voters decide whether to increase the tax in a statewide election.
The tax hike faced opposition from anti-tax groups, tobacco companies and owners of stores that sell cigarettes.
The tax increase also was criticized by the American Cancer Society as too low to decrease smoking rates.
A day earlier, the sponsor of a higher tobacco tax increase shelved the bill, saying he didn't have enough votes.
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