Cigarette Tax Increase Bill Again Fails In State House Committee
BATON ROUGE, La. (KPEL) -- A second push to raise the state's cigarette tax failed once again in committee Tuesday, indicating how unpopular such a measure is among legislators.
House Bill 537, sponsored by Monroe Democrat Rep. Katrina Jackson, would have amended the state's constitution to raise the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 33 cents.
The measure, which would have required a two-thirds vote of both legislative chambers and then approval by voters, failed in the House Ways and Means committee on an 11 - 7 vote.
A similar bill, which would have raised cigarette taxes by $1.05, was shelved Monday by its author, Bogalusa Democrat Rep. Harold Ritchie.
State cigarette taxes are among the lowest in the nation, according to a report from the Federation of Tax Administrators. Only Virginia's rate is lower, at 30-cents per pack. Texas collects $1.41 per pack of cigarettes.