A higher cigarette tax could motivate more people to quit smoking.
The tax on a pack of cigarettes sold in Wisconsin is now up to $1.77 a pack, after a dollar increase kicked in today. Maureen Busalacchi with Smoke Free Wisconsin says that's expected to get more people thinking about quitting for good. The group estimates the tax will help 33,000 adults quit for good and prevent 66,000 kids from ever starting.
However, Busalacchi says Wisconsin is far from kicking the habit. They estimate over 900,000 smokers are still left in Wisconsin.
If you're among those smokers thinking about quitting in 2008, help is available. The Tobacco Quit Line is making counseling available and even offering kits with stop smoking aids included in them. Busalacchi says the Quit Line has seen a surge in callers since the tax was approved in the state budget.