Nevada Tobacco Tax Increase is Big… | Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
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Nevada Tobacco Tax Increase is Big Win for Kids and Health

Statement of Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
June 01, 2015

WASHINGTON, DC – It is terrific news for Nevada’s kids and health that the Legislature has voted to increase the state cigarette tax by $1 per pack. The tobacco tax increase is truly a win-win-win solution for Nevada – a health win that will reduce tobacco use and save lives, a financial win that will help to balance the state budget and invest in education, and a political win that polls show is popular with voters. We look forward to Governor Brian Sandoval signing this legislation into law.

We applaud Governor Sandoval for his leadership in proposing a cigarette tax increase and the lawmakers who joined him in siding with kids over the tobacco industry.

The evidence is clear that increasing the cigarette tax is one of the most effective ways to reduce smoking, especially among kids. Studies show that every 10 percent increase in the price of cigarettes reduces youth smoking by about 6.5 percent and overall cigarette consumption by about 4 percent. Nevada can expect the $1 cigarette tax increase to:

  • Prevent more than 10,200 Nevada kids from becoming smokers
  • Spur more than 15,400 current adult smokers to quit
  • Save more than 7,200 Nevada residents from premature, smoking-caused deaths
  • Save more than $474 million in future health care costs.

The state projects that the $1 cigarette tax increase will raise more than $192 million in new revenue over the first two years.

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death and disease in Nevada, claiming 4,100 lives each year and costing the state more than $1 billion annually in health care bills. While Nevada has made significant progress in reducing youth smoking, 10.3 percent of high school students still smoke and 2,000 more kids become regular smokers every year.

With Nevada’s increase to $1.80 per pack, the average state cigarette tax will be $1.56 per pack. We call on states across the nation to significantly increase the tobacco tax to reduce tobacco use and its devastating health and financial toll.