By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily
Wyoming’s Legislature is set to review an increase in tobacco taxes that would add 24 cents to the cost of a pack of cigarettes if approved.
When the Legislature resumes its work late this month, one of the bills it is slated to review is House Bill 55, which would boost the excise tax on a pack of cigarettes from 60 cents to 84 cents.
The bill would also increase the excise tax on snuff from 60 cents per ounce to 72 cents.
The excise taxes are applied in addition to sales taxes and federal taxes also paid on the products.
According to a fiscal note accompanying the proposed legislation, the tax increase would generate about $6.1 million per year for the state’s main bank account and $920,000 per year for local governments.
Wyoming currently has the 44th-lowest excise tax on cigarettes in the nation, coming in just ahead of South Carolina at 57 cents per pack and just behind Tennessee at 62 cents.
If approved, the bill, sponsored by the Legislature’s Joint Revenue Committee, would raise Wyoming to having the 39th-lowest rate, where the state would join Colorado, according to figures from the salestaxhandbook.com.
The country’s highest excise tax rate on cigarettes is found in New York at $4.35 per pack, according to salestaxhandbook.com.