Thursday, January 12, 2012

Study: Raising Cigarette Taxes Doesn't Hurt Convenience Stores

Posted By on Thu, Jan 12, 2012 at 9:19 AM

With an eye toward a legislative proposal to boost Idaho's cigarette tax, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network today unveiled a study that they said "debunks the myth that raising cigarette taxes hurts convenience stores."

"Our results tell Idaho's policy makers that they can realize the health benefits of cigarette-tax increases without hurting convenience stores," said Dr. Frank Cahloupka, co-author of the study. "Our findings clearly counter tobacco industry and related organizations' claims that higher cigarette taxes have a negative economic impact on convenience stores."

The study examined data from all U.S. states across 13 years and, according to the authors, found that raising cigarette taxes didn't lead to fewer convenience stores. In fact, the study reported a small increase in the number of convenience stores in those states that raised cigarette taxes.

The group is helping to proposing a measure that could see a pack of cigarettes in Idaho increase by at least $1.25.

According to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, a $1.25 increase could:
Raise $50.5 million in revenue
Prompt 9.400 Idahoan smokers to quit
Save 6,600 Idahoans from premature, smoking-related deaths
Save $413.2 million in tobacco-related health care costs

The study was conducted by Chaloupka and colleagues at the University of Illilinois at Chicago.

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