By Marcus Huff
Staff Writer 

Tobacco tax increase proposed in legislature


January 22, 2019

CHEYENNE- A bill introduced in the Wyoming House of Representatives on Friday would try, yet again, to raise taxes on cigarettes and snuff in Wyoming, by proposing a 166 percent excise tax increase on tobacco products.

House Bill 0218 would increase the excise tax on cigarettes and snuff to $1.60 per pack or can (currently 60 cents per pack and can) and result in an estimated revenue increase to the state’s general fund of $22.7 million per year. Local governments would see an increase in revenue by an estimated $4 million per year.

The state notes that the new rate of $1.60 per pack or can would be similar to South Dakota, which charges $1.53, and Montana, which charges $1.70. Idaho, Nebraska and Coloraod currently tax less than a dollar.

According to the Wyoming State Department of Health, 19 percent of Wyoming residents use tobacco products, slightly above the national average of 17 percent.

Wyoming is currently ranked 44 in the United States for its current tax of only 60 cents per pack, with the national average being $1.73.

According to the Wyoming Department of Revenue, Washakie County received $29,880 in cigarette-related tax revenue in 2018.

As a whole, $17,675,180 was distributed to communities throughout the state.


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