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- Bob Evans restaurant in Cape Girardeau among chain's 21 closings (04/26/16)9
- Missouri House votes to allow concealed weapons without permits (04/28/16)7
- Police report filed, but no charges in incident at Cape Central (04/29/16)37
- Two hurt in motorcycle wreck on Interstate 55 (04/25/16)1
- Senator introduces bill for I-57 that would connect Sikeston with Little Rock (04/28/16)4
- Law firm requests information about Cape's traffic cameras (04/25/16)2
- Local lawmakers split over failed medical marijuana bill; voters may have a say (04/26/16)19
- Local company makes eco-friendly kitty litter that cuts cat-box smell (04/25/16)
- Man accused of pointing BB gun at Chaffee resident (04/26/16)2
Missouri secretary of state approves tobacco tax increase petition
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- The heat is on to increase Missouri's relatively low tax on cigarettes and other tobacco products.
On Thursday, Secretary of State Robin Carnahan approved a ballot referendum petition for circulation by the American Cancer Society.
Although several draft petitions have already been approved by the secretary of state for possible inclusion on next November's ballot, cigarette tax increase proponents are trying to hedge their bets in 2012 by circulating multiple proposals.
The latest petition asks voters to support a tax of 3.65 cents per cigarette to fund anti-smoking education programs. The same position would also levy a tax of 25 percent on roll-your-own tobacco and 15 percent on other tobacco products.
Although many Republican leaders in the General Assembly have shunned the idea of increasing any taxes, including on tobacco, supporters of the movement say the additional revenue could help the state during its current budget crisis.
Before any statutory changes can be brought before Missouri voters in November 2012, signatures must be obtained from 5 percent of registered voters in six of the state's nine congressional districts by May of next year.