A Definite Smoking Ban will be Soon

Cigarettes displays were not prohibited yet. They will be banned by 2013 when new restrictions on the use of vending cigarette machines will be drawn up too, minister said. The smokers’ age also will be restricted when they would like to
Other measures including outlawing packs of ten and forcing makers to produce plain packaging have been dropped.
But beginning with October 2011 large shops will have had to remove all tobacco displays from the point of sale and smaller businesses will have to fulfill by 2013.
Business secretaries are not agreed with these moves due to fears it could harm small corner shops during the economic fall.
A spokesman for the Department of Health said there was no evidence that shops had been forced to close in other countries which have already removed cigarettes from display. There were also concerns that the ban will increase smuggling of tobacco.
Researchers reported that they found that in countries where displays smoking were removed prevalence among young people has fallen by up to 10 percent.
For to ensure children to not buy cigarettes from vending machines will be introduce special methods. One of the methods could include requiring customers to buy tokens from the pub landlord or shopkeeper, electronic ID cards to operate the machines or infra red remote control which the shopkeeper activates if they believe the customer to be over 18.
The measures will be brought in by 2011 and monitored to check they are working. If not, then ministers will consider banning vending machines altogether in 2013.
Vending machines are the primary source of cigarettes for nearly one in five young people aged 11 to 15 and children were able to use the machines in more than 40 percent of test purchases.
Source: Ourcigarettesnews ®

Governor cigarette tax hike draws fire

A massive state budget plan rolled out Tuesday by Gov. Bev Perdue contains much to digest, but various state and local officials wasted no time in criticizing one of its key proposals, a $1-per-pack cigarette tax hike.
That state increase would come on the heels of a federal cigarette tax hike from 39 cents to $1.01 per pack that goes into effect on April 1.
“That means people in Mount Airy and Surry County are probably going to sneak across the line to Virginia to buy cigarettes,” state Sen. Don East of Surry County said Tuesday afternoon of Perdue’s budget package. It also calls for a 5-percent tax surcharge on alcohol as part of her emphasis on so-called “sin taxes.”
The new governor’s budget further prescribes cutting some 1,400 positions from the state government payroll and eliminating 20 programs she considers duplications, inefficient and “absolutely inessential.” The package would reduce expenditures by $2.6 billion during the next two years.
“The alcohol and tobacco taxes are especially going to impact our area,” East, a Republican from Pilot Mountain, said of the measure expected to generate $508 million.
The Democratic governor’s spending plan is a response to a sagging economy that has threatened revenues typically counted on by state government to fund its operations.
Overall state spending for education would increase by $350 million, with the help of federal stimulus money, although Perdue said that will “do little” to move North Carolina’s educational system forward in comparison with other states.
Aside from the proposed cigarette and alcohol hikes, Perdue’s plan contains no broad-based tax increases. North Carolina’s version of the earned income tax credit would be raised to aid low-to-moderate-income families. Also, the budget proposal calls for businesses with profits of less than $100,000 to be exempt from state tax for the first $25,000 of net income, with the amount lowering to the first $15,000 for business earning between $100,000 and $200,000.
“This budget probably weighs about 12 pounds, I’d say,” East said.

Smokeless tobacco target for tax increase

R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. doesn’t need a crystal ball to forecast the likely outcome of its accelerated push into smokeless tobacco.
As the leader in next-generation smokeless products, the company knows that a higher profile, whether for the discount moist-snuff Grizzly brand or Camel Snus, is going to create a bigger bull’s-eye for federal and state politicians looking to fill budget shortfalls with a larger tax on those products.
Smokeless tobacco is taxed in North Carolina at 10 percent of the wholesale price of a product, but the N.C. General Assembly is unlikely to pass a higher tax on smokeless tobacco in this year’s session, said Rep. Hugh Holliman, D-Davidson. Holliman is a supporter of banning tobacco in virtually all workplaces and buildings open to the public in the state.
Holliman said he believes that the federal State Children’s Health Insurance Program bill, which raised the federal excise tax on cigarettes by 62 cents to $1.01 a pack, diminished current interest in raising the state’s cigarette tax beyond 35 cents a pack.
But an increase in the state’s smokeless-tobacco tax is on the table, said Marc Basnight, the Senate president pro tem.
The amount of tax revenue that can be raised from smokeless tobacco is small compared with cigarettes. That’s because compared with 20 percent of adult Americans who smoke cigarettes, about 6 percent of male adult Americans and less than 1 percent of female adult Americans use smokeless-tobacco products.
However, smokeless products are rising in popularity as an alternative to smoking, according to some anti-smoking advocacy groups.
For example, Grizzly had an 18 percent increase in cans sold last year to nearly 280 million. Grizzly’s market share in shipments also rose 2.2 percentage points to 23.3 percent.
Camel Snus comes in a small pouch similar to a tea bag that is placed between the lip and gum. The tobacco is pasteurized, not fermented, and it contains less moisture and salt than moist snuff. It also does not require the consumer to spit, Reynolds said.
“Snus makes up about 1 percent of smokeless-tobacco sales, so clearly it has a ways to go before having an impact,” said Bill Godshall, the executive director of SmokeFree Pennsylvania, a group that advocates smokeless products as a way to wean smokers off cigarettes.
Nevertheless, Reynolds is plowing ahead with its smokeless-tobacco initiatives as part of what Susan Ivey, its chairwoman and chief executive, calls its transformation into becoming a “total tobacco company.”
That includes running high-profile advertisements for Camel Snus recently in magazines such as Car & Driver, People, Rolling Stone and Sports Illustrated. By comparison, Reynolds has not run print ads for its cigarettes brands for the past 15 months.
The tag line for the Camel Snus ad is “Your cigarettes may get jealous.” The company also is running special ads in test markets for next-generation smokeless products such as orbs, sticks and film strips similar to clean-breath products.
Most tobacco taxes are geared toward recouping the cost to society of health-care expenses related to its use. Unlike cigarettes and the second-hand smoke they produce, there is no indirect harmful aspect to the use of a smokeless tobacco product.
Basnight supported raising the tax on smokeless tobacco in 2007 to help pay for cancer research, according to Schorr Johnson, the spokesman for the senator.
“Because of the billions of dollars tobacco costs our state each year in health-care expenses, Sen. Basnight is in favor of increasing all taxes on tobacco products, including smokeless tobacco,” Johnson said. “He has not endorsed a specific increase for cigarettes or smokeless tobacco yet.”
But the Tax Foundation, a nonprofit research group, said that special taxes on tobacco products “should exist only if those products impose significant costs on third parties.”
“Smokeless tobacco, however, imposes no such harm. Other costs unfairly imposed on society from tobacco consumption have been cited, such as the unattractiveness of witnessing certain behavior associated with chew tobacco, and the message children receive as a result of viewing adult tobacco consumption.
“A government official who merely desires to influence individual consumption decisions because of his own anti-tobacco sentiment cannot be justified by an appeal to principles of sound tax policy,” according to the foundation.
Some anti-tobacco groups fiercely support taxing smokeless products at the same rate as cigarettes.
The groups, having won the day with bans on smoking in most public venues after a 16-year fight, are gearing up their efforts and rhetoric to try to prevent smokeless products from taking root.
“All tobacco products should be taxed at the same rate to discourage use,” said Dr. John Spangler, the director of the Tobacco Intervention program at Wake Forest University School of Medicine.
“Smokeless and cigars are gateway products to teen and young adult smoking, and as such there should be strong disincentive by taxing as high as cigarettes to avoid youth uptake of the tobacco habit.”
The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said it favors a higher tax on smokeless products in part “because moist snuff now comes in a wide variety of kid-friendly flavors such as grape, apple and vanilla. Because they are taxed — and priced — lower than cigarettes, they are more accessible than cigarettes.”
“Just like there is no safe cigarette, there is no safe tobacco product,” said Melva Fager Okun, the senior manager for N.C. Prevention Partners. “Spit tobacco and other smokeless products are harmful to your health and can cause cancer in the mouth and jaw and other illnesses. These diseases are painful, disfiguring and very expensive to treat.”
However, other health-advocacy groups want to limit the amount of tax on smokeless tobacco to encourage smokers to quite cigarettes with a lower-cost product.
Brad Rodu, the chairman of the Tobacco Harm Reduction Research University at the University of Louisville, has been advocating implementation of tobacco harm-reduction products for 15 years. His research is supported by unrestricted grants from smokeless tobacco manufacturers UST and Swedish Match to the University of Louisville, and by the Kentucky Research Challenge Trust Fund.
“All smokeless products in the United States, including the new line from Reynolds, confer only about 1 percent to 2 percent of the health risks of smoking,” Rodu said. “The development and marketing of vastly safer smokeless-tobacco products that appeal to adult cigarette smokers has the potential to transform tobacco use from a highly risky behavior to one that is as safe as consuming coffee.”
The tobacco companies have a bull’s eye on their backs “no matter what they do,” said John Sweeney, the director of the sports-communication program at UNC Chapel Hill.
“While the taxing of products like tobacco and alcohol can be viewed as a way of getting extra taxes, this is hardly deemed a public service in the average citizen’s mind. “Sin taxes are getting revenue from a convenient place, and part of the strategy is making tobacco products as expensive as possible,” he said.
Source: Journalnow

Rebel smokes

It’s been more than three months since the Oregon law banning smoking in bars has gone into effect, perhaps still too soon to see any tangible repercussions, positive or negative, aside from, of course, the actual absence of smoke.
Quite a few bars and some restaurants still have lingering reminders of the way things were … the evidence of decades of soaking in a persistent nicotine fog won’t just vanish because of a law—as once-white walls, and the faint but enduring smell of cigarettes is still fused to every porous surface.
Many bar owners and employees worry that what won’t linger in the bars could be the smokers themselves. While less money is being spent on non-essentials across the board, those earning a living in the service industry fear that the smoking ban could cause a mass exodus and a significant decrease in income.
In all the other places where smoking bans have been instated, there seem to be conflicting reports on the effect this has on bars and taverns. Most people that work in them seem to agree that there is a drop in business, or that regular patrons who smoke don’t come as often, or stay as long.
But they’re still out there.
We see them huddled outside now, these pariahs—outcasts from the warm, social environment where they once were included. In doorways, under awnings, alone or clustered in small groups, at least some of the smokers are hanging tough, braving their exile in the bitter cold, the pouring rain. They won’t be driven back into their homes, and they can’t—or won’t—quit smoking. They are a persistent lot. They are the ones who drink and smoke.
I’ve seen this all happen before—it was a long time ago, in a far-off land called California. It was about to become 1998, and people in bars all across the state were puffing as though their lives depended upon it. You could hear the words in the air, repeated again and again: “Last chance … it’s your last chance to smoke inside. …”
Some swore they’d quit smoking, others said they’d quit going out. Still others, those who were in favor of the ban—or at least perversely predisposed to find the brighter side of things—mentioned the benefits: no more stinky hair and clothing after a night out. No mandatory second-hand smoke for those people who like to socialize with an adult beverage sans cigarettes.
The legislators who passed the law said they were helping employees of the food and beverage industry live longer, healthier lives. Many of these bartenders and waitresses rolled their eyes, and went outside for a smoke. Quite a few of them weren’t happy, even though the law was supposed to be for their benefit. Even the non-smokers were worried that the ban would affect their income negatively. Most everyone who was adamantly opposed to working in a smoky environment had already moved on to less polluted employment.
There were still patrons, in smaller numbers, more than a few of them who sat staring at their hands unhappily, chewing on straws, eying the doorway. Conversations were interrupted frequently, pool games abandoned halfway through as people bolted to the sidewalks and parking lots to satisfy their mounting craving to puff away at a cigarette. And, yes, they were drinking a bit less, leaving a bit sooner.
No one claims to remember the first time the rule was broken, or who the guilty party was. I was there. Let’s say it was a man named Bob, who had drunk so many pints of beer, who was so engrossed in recounting his hazy thoughts through a cloud of spittle, that he completely forgot it was 1998. Instead of heading toward the exit as he had done a dozen times already that evening, without even thinking, he pulled out a cigarette and inhaled, continuing his rambling. He was vaguely aware of the sudden attention and admiration directed toward him—for the first time that night, all eyes were on Bob.
When he went to flick his ash, the spell was broken. Everyone, Bob included, realized simultaneously that he was simply plastered—not the captivating orator that Bob believed himself to be, not the brazen rebel leader that the other smoking patrons saw a glimmer of, for just a moment. …
That moment was long enough to plant a seed. Bob, now clumsily self-conscious, began to laboriously grind his cigarette out on the bottom of his shoe. But no one had told him to stop. There were no smoking police. In a few minutes, someone wandered towards the farthest, darkest corner and lit up. Two girls went into the bathroom, lit cigarettes and blew the smoke out the window.
The bartender noticed, of course. Anyone who was too blatant about smoking inside the bar was shut down. Some learned to slyly pass a makeshift ashtray out of drink coasters, handing it to the patrons with a wink saying: “You know, you’re not supposed to smoke in here.”
Suddenly, every other bar you went to seemed to have a sort of “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy towards smoking inside. Those employees who were not all that crazy about the ban in the first place found themselves in the position of having to enforce it, or not.
Other bars strictly maintained the  “no smoking” policy, and everyone seemed content. Those who wanted to puff away figured out where they could get away with it. Bar employees who didn’t want to be around smoke could—and did—ask the offending parties to take it outside. It seemed as though there was a place for everyone.
Eventually, complaints were made. It occurred to someone that if the smoking ban was going to be effectively enforced, some agency aside from the bar and restaurant owners and employees (who were, by and large, against the ban, remember) should be monitoring these places.
Inspectors and agents from the liquor commission, the health department and the police were assigned to monitor and in some cases to conduct undercover stings, to catch the non-complying establishments, and after a few citations and some hefty fines were actually handed out, the idea that there would be NO SMOKING in bars finally, completely sunk in. Four years after the law went into effect.
Could all that happen here, in Oregon? For all I know, it’s already begun. Someone may have forgotten that it’s 2009, lit up a cigarette while his or her mind was somewhere else, and decided to see how far he or she could go with it. Someone witnessing this might have gotten a little bit bolder and contemplated the idea of challenging the smoking ban, too. No two stories ever play out the same way.
Legislating personal choice is a very tricky business. I choose not to smoke. (Well, I’ve made an excellent effort to choose not to smoke, which has failed on a few occasions in the past few years.) I don’t want stinky hair or clothes or lung cancer or heart disease. I can see the logic behind banning smoke in a place that serves the general population, or that is dedicated to improving or maintaining health.
But … in bars, all bars? I might risk getting thrown out of the righteous ex-smoker’s club, but I still believe in the individual liberty to self-destruct via our preferred methods in the appropriate context, including in smoky bars.

Calls to quit smoking up since tax hike

A dramatic increase in the number of calls to a smoking cessation hotline since a nearly $86 million increase in state tobacco taxes went into effect has the state Health Department close to running out of money to run the operation.
The department needs about $1 million pay the California company contracted to run the hotline through the rest of the fiscal year, officials told the Joint Budget Committee on Wednesday.
“We’re really running on edge with our contract,” Deputy Health Director Mary Leath told the committee.
The committee agreed to endorse the transfer of $1 million from the Tobacco Master Settlement to fund the hotline through June 30.
Leath said the hotline had been averaging about 1,000 calls a month, but received about 1,000 calls during the first week in February. About the same number called the second week and by the third week the number had dropped to 900, she said.
The volume of calls rose to 1,600 the last week of the month, and during the first week of March 2, 600 people called, she said.
Act 180 of 2009 raised state cigarette tax by 56 cents a pack and also increased the tax on smokeless tobacco to fund a statewide trauma system and a variety of health-related programs across the state. A federal tax hike will add another 62 cents a pack to the price of cigarettes, beginning April 1.
The Health Department currently has about $27,000 left to pay on its cessation hotline contract with Free and Clear of San Jose, Calif., through June 30.
“The calls coming are eating that cost up,” Leath said.
Sen. Percy Malone, D-Arkadelphia, questioned the hotline’s effectiveness, noting that smoking is an addiction and much more is needed than just a consultation and five follow up visits.
Leath said plans were being developed to add more programs to help tobacco smokers, and they were expected to be presented next session.
The cessation hotlines are considered successful by the U.S Center for Disease Control. Since Arkansas’ hotline began in 2001 about 84,000 people have participated and stopped smoking, Leath said.
She said about 22.4 percent of Arkansans over 18 smoke, down from 26.3 percent in 2001.
Act 180 of 2009 raised the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 56 cents and increased the tax on smokeless tobacco products beginning March 1.
The tax revenue is to be used to fund a statewide trauma system and a variety of health-related programs across the state.

Cigarette tax rate can reduce cigarettes consumption

Experts from China’s State Administration of Taxation and the University of California, Berkeley unveiled a report, Tobacco tax and its potential impact on China, in Beijing last December. In the report, they called for a substantial increase in the cigarette tax rate in order to reduce cigarette consumption in China.
According to the experts, if China’s cigarette tax rate was raised to 51 percent of the retail price, an increase of 11 percentage points from the current level, 13.7 million smokers would therefore quit smoking and 3.4 million lives would be saved. The tax rate increase could also generate 64.9 billion yuan in additional revenue for the government every year.
There has long been an economic misreading of tobacco addiction: nicotine in tobacco makes smokers addicted to cigarettes, so price increases will never cut sales of cigarettes. However, evidences around the world in the past century prove that this is a false judgment. Almost in every country, once tobacco prices are raised, consumption will fall.
Statistics show that this is also the case in China. According to studies by professor Mao Zhengzhong from the West China University of Medical Sciences, a 10-percent increase in tobacco prices will reduce 1.5 percent of cigarette consumption. This is not a small figure in China. Every year, Chinese smokers consume 170 billion cigarettes and thus 1.5 percent means 2.55 billion cigarettes. This might be the total cigarette consumption in some other countries in a year.
Some people argue that raising tobacco taxes is unfair to low-income smokers because they have to spend more of their limited income on cigarettes. This is illogical. First, tobacco taxes are not the source of poverty, but the habit of smoking is an important factor contributing to poverty. In some of China’s low-income families, expenditures on cigarettes can account for 7-10 percent of their total income. If the smoking members abandon this habit, this part of their income can be spent on education, health and food.
Second, low-income smokers tend to be more sensitive to cigarette prices and so raising cigarette taxes will affect them greatly. In this sense, higher tobacco taxes have more benefits to low-income earners than harm.

Cigarette Tax Hike Would Make People Give up Smoking

When you were thinking about smoking discount cigarettes two years ago, I bet you thought only of health complications that are related with smoking. Nowadays the first thought that will come across a smoker’s mind after new bill comes into effect would be the huge price of cigarettes.
In compliance with the bill recently signed by President Obama, federal cigarette tax will increase up to 62cents per a single pack when it comes into effect on April 1. That will get the nation’s average cost of a pack of cigarettes to almost $5. And it would definitely hit smokers’ pockets being the main reason for thousands of heavy smokers to kick their habit.
According to the data collected by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the latter tax increase signifies that smokers will have to give from $2 to $3, 5 to state and federal treasury for a pack of cigarettes in 27 states and the District of Columbia. The smokers from New York will get the highest tax burden, paying a total of $3.76 in state and federal taxes for every pack. Moreover, these numbers don’t contain local cigarette taxes, as for example the $1.50 per pack tax paid by New York City smokers.
Tom Houston, M.D., director of Ohio Health’s Nicotine Dependence Program and clinical professor in the family medicine department at Ohio State University in Columbus thinks that increasing cigarette prices is the best way to reduce the number of smokers in the country, much better than any public smoking bans, since with the present economic situation the number of people who can afford themselves to buy a 2, 5 $ cigarette pack is decreasing.
Hence, the newly signed bill has faced mixed reactions. James Mitchell, a chemistry teacher from Bridgetown High School complained that the tax increase would hit those heavy old-time smokers, who have been nicotine addicted for a long time. He stated that smokers would not have many options: they either would pay this larger-than-life price for a single pack or pay even more for rehabilitation and smoking cessation therapies that also include expensive consultations with psychologists or try to find other maybe illegal methods of getting cigarettes. In any case the situation is very sad for these people.
Tom Houston, M.D., director of Ohio Health’s Nicotine Dependence Program and clinical professor in the family medicine department at Ohio State University in Columbus thinks that increasing cigarette prices is the best way to reduce the number of smokers in the country, much better than any public smoking bans, since with the present economic situation the number of people who can afford themselves to buy a 2, 5 $ cigarette pack is decreasing.
Hence, the newly signed bill has faced mixed reactions. James Mitchell, a chemistry teacher from Bridgetown High School complained that the tax increase would hit those heavy old-time smokers, who have been nicotine addicted for a long time. He stated that smokers would not have many options: they either would pay this larger-than-life price for a single pack or pay even more for rehabilitation and smoking cessation therapies that also include expensive consultations with psychologists or try to find other maybe illegal methods of getting cigarettes. In any case the situation is very sad for these people.

Source: Ourcigarettesnews ®

Raise taxes, lower revenue

An odd thing happened the last time New Jersey raised its cigarette tax: It lost money.
According to advocates for lower taxes, that’s because New Jersey smokers have cheaper purchase options nearby in Pennsylvania and Delaware, or online.
Pennsylvania also saw revenues fall when it last raised cigarette taxes.
Still, with both states facing mounting budget gaps, Gov. Rendell has proposed a cigarette tax increase and Gov. Corzine is considering one for the spending plan he will introduce Tuesday.
Anti-tax groups are warning that if the levies on smokes go up again, states could see less bang per pack.
“When you’re in a high-tax state, smokers, like anybody else, are price-sensitive, so they’re going to go looking for cigarettes where they’re cheaper,” said Gregg Edwards, president of the Center for Policy Research of New Jersey. “There is a small number of folks who just wouldn’t absorb the price increase and just decided to quit, but most of those folks just go to other places.”
Edwards said the problem would be more acute in New Jersey because both Pennsylvania and Delaware are less expensive places to buy cigarettes.
To back up his argument, Edwards pointed to New Jersey’s recent revenue and cigarette sales. The state raised its cigarette taxes in fiscal years 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2007. In the first three instances, sales shrunk but revenue grew.
But after the last increase, which at the time gave New Jersey the highest cigarette tax in the nation, collections fell from $788.6 million to $770.5 million. Estimated revenues for fiscal year 2008 are $775 million, below the peak of fiscal year 2005.
The sale of cigarette tax stamps has fallen from 495,000 in 2001-02 to around 300,000 per year.
Pennsylvania, too, saw revenue slide as taxes rose. Rendell raised cigarette taxes 35 cents in 2004. At first the commonwealth saw a modest income bump, but in the first full fiscal year after the tax hike, cigarette tax revenue fell by $72 million, roughly 8 percent.
Revenue has never gotten back to fiscal 2004 levels, when the increase first hit.
Michael LaFaive of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy recently studied the impact of cigarette taxes in Michigan, California and New Jersey and warned that as levies rise, so does smuggling from both “casual” smugglers – say a New Jerseyan who goes to Delaware for some smokes – and organized crime.
LaFaive’s study estimated that 40 percent of cigarettes smoked in New Jersey come from out-of-state or illegal lines of distribution. The figure was based on smoking rates, the number of adults in the state, and the number of legal sales per adult.
The study, citing New Jersey’s $2.575 tax per pack and its proximity to low-tax states, called New Jersey “a premier destination” for smugglers.
“It’s happening in states that impose high cigarette excise taxes,” said LaFaive, the director of fiscal policy at the center, based in Michigan.
New Jersey now ranks second to New York’s $2.75 cigarette tax rate. Corzine is considering raising the tax as he tries to close a multi-billion dollar budget deficit.
Rendell has proposed a 10-cent cigarette tax hike to bring the rate to $1.45, which would be 19th highest in the nation. Delaware, which shares borders with both states, charges $1.15 per pack, less than Pennsylvania and less than half of the tax in New Jersey.
To anti-smoking groups, the tax rate is about more than just money.
“For us, it’s sort of like one of the Ten Commandments of cancer prevention,” said Peter Slocum, vice president of advocacy for the American Cancer Society of New York and New Jersey. “Any time you increase the price, it’s a good thing, because it discourages people from smoking.”
Slocum’s organization estimates that for every 10 percent price increase, smoking drops by 4 percent. With the federal tax set to rise to $1.01 in April from 39 cents, Slocum said, New Jersey should aim even higher to make up for the expected consumption falloff.
“We would like to see them raise it more boldly,” Slocum said. “Push it up to three bucks, then you would get some public health benefit.”
Losses in revenue, he argued, are made up by having a healthier public. The cancer society estimates that $3 billion of private and public health care costs in New Jersey come from smoking-related health issues. The figure is based on population and national rates of health problems.
New Jersey Treasury spokesman Tom Vincz said the falloff in revenues after the 2006 tax increase does not account for cases the state is pursuing where people buy cigarettes online and have not paid taxes. He said the state works to get payments from those smokers.
Historically, cigarette tax increases take into account predicted changes in consumption, Vincz wrote in an e-mail. Over time, people who start buying in other states may tire of it and return to purchasing, and paying taxes, at home. Others who quit may return to smoking, he wrote, creating an “ebb and flow” of revenue over a long period of time.
“You know you won’t get the dollar-for-dollar return, and you calibrate the change in the level of the tax accordingly,” Vincz wrote.

Cigarettes still burning holes in Austrian ban

Cafe owners and patrons in Austria are still puffing away seven weeks after a partial smoking ban was introduced, and they are not about to stop.
“Why not turn this place into a hospital, while we’re at it?” asks Georg Hold, one of many Viennese “Kaffeehaus” owners now up in arms against the new legislation, which was introduced on January 1.
Smoking bans have been distinctly unpopular and hard to enforce in a country where, according to the World Health Organization, no less than 47 percent of the population smokes, and each consumer burns through an average 2,073 cigarettes per year.
A first attempt in January 2008 to curb smoking in restaurants and bars on a voluntary basis failed miserably.