A prediction today, with legislators poised to act on Governor Doyle's proposed 75 cent increase in the cigarette tax. The increase being considered by legislative budget writers won't raise as much revenue as the governor's office claims. That according to a study by the Wisconsin Association of Convenience Stores
Pam Christienson of the association says New Jersey actually LOST revenue last year after raising its tobacco tax. "This increase represents a forty two percent increase to the state excise tax, but it's really only going to result in a six point-eight percent increase to the tax revenue that's going to come in," Christienson asserts. "People are going to be buying their cigarettes . . . in other ways, and the state will not see the revenue."
Christienson says smokers will turn to the Internet and black market to avoid the tax increase, which the Doyle Administration estimates would raise nearly 300 million dollars over the next two years.