Backers of cigarette tax hike begin collecting signatures

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Supporters of increasing the cigarette tax by 23 cents a pack are collecting signatures to get the proposal on the ballot.

Missouri Petroleum Marketers and Convenience Store Association Executive Director Ronald Leone said Wednesday an outside firm began gathering signatures this week.

Initiative petitions need a certain number of voter signatures to make it on the 2016 ballot.

The proposal would increase the cigarette tax to 40 cents per pack in phases, beginning in 2017. The measure would increase taxes on other tobacco products to 15 percent from 10 percent.

The association says the tax would bring in about $100 million per year to pay for transportation infrastructure.

A proposal to increase the tax by 60 cents a pack primarily for early childhood education is under review by the secretary of state.


This story has been corrected to show the most recently proposed tax primarily for early childhood education would raise the cigarette tax by 60 cents and not to 50 cents, and that the proposal is under review by the secretary of state.

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