Proposed 40% taxation of vapor products

Posted by Jared on

E-cigarettes continue to offer smokers a healthy alternative to traditional cigarettes but this could change in the state of Pennsylvania. Tom Wolf, Governor of Pennsylvania, proposed a budget in 2016 that some have seen as unfair. In the budget he recommended that a 40% wholesale tax on vapor and smokeless products be imposed. This proposal can cause many things to become different in the market of vapor products. 

One of the most recognizable changes that such a tax would create is the amount of money that it will raise for the state of Pennsylvania. If the proposed budget passes, Wolf has predicted that the state will gain about 80 million dollars or more. To some this seems as justifiable reason that the new tax should pass. The raised money could help to fund other areas of the state budget such as education. 

If such a tax passes then this could put vapor and smokeless product buyers in a bind. Vapor products are currently affordable, which is one of the reasons for their popularity. If these increase in price, then some individuals may choose to switch back to traditional cigarettes. If vapor customers do switch back then this could cause individuals to lose the health benefits that they have become accustomed to as a result of purchasing smokeless products instead of cigarettes. 

The PA State Assembly passed a budget bill in the month of June that excluded the proposed taxation on vapor and smokeless by Governor Wolf. Unfortunately, this budget bill did not get passed, but rather it was vetoed by Governor Wolf. Due to the budget not being passed the PA State Assembly will have to meet once again in order to try to negotiate a budget bill. Hopefully, when the assembly members meet again they will negotiate another budget bill that excludes the unfair taxation that has been recommended by Governor Wolf. 

I know many of you are asking what can be done in order to make sure that such taxation is not included in the 2016 Pennsylvania’s budget. One thing that can be done is to contact your lawmakers by writing them a letter. Let your lawmakers know that you thank them for not including the vapor and smokeless product taxation in the previous budget bill that was vetoed. This may seem like something small, but it can have a huge impact of the budget for 2016. If lawmakers see that you support their previous decision to exclude the vapor and smokeless from the 2016 budget, then they just may opt to continue to exclude the taxation from further budget bills. In addition to sending a letter to thank the lawmakers for not including the taxation of vapor and smokeless products in the Pennsylvania 2016 budget you can write a second letter letting the lawmakers know how important vapor and smokeless products are to you. To help to give them an idea of why you chose vapor and smokeless over traditional products you can tell them about your personal story in the letter.

Did you recently have a health scare due to the cigarettes you were smoking? Did your doctor inform you that smoking tobacco products was contributing your health failing and so you decided to switch to a product that was low-risk? Any stories such as these can be powerful tools when trying to make sure that the recommended 40% taxation of vapor and smokeless products by Governor Wolf is not passed. With your personal stories lawmakers will get an understanding about how important vapor and smokeless products are to the residents of Pennsylvania and how vital it is to keep the products affordable. 

Hopefully, with enough letters lawmakers will continue to work with Governor Wolf in order to create a budget bill that will get approved. 

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