Healthy Living: Local News
Your Health: Good News For Smokers, Bad News For Public Health
Story Updated: Apr 6, 2012
What wasn't in the New York state budget affects smokers.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed budget earlier this year sought to close a loophole in the law by taxing loose tobacco at the same rate as cigarettes: $4.35 an ounce.
Anti-smoking advocates heralded the move, saying it would have positive impacts on public health.
But the tax increase didn't make it into the final budget and at least one convenience store owner is pleased.
Mark Bonner of the LeRay Street Dairy Market said taxes like the one proposed do little to stop people from smoking.
"They do just push them to other locations, whether it be Indian reservations, through the mail or online," Bonner said.
"So, they're going to get the tobacco, just not through the local people."
Not everyone is pleased. Tobacco Prevention Awareness Cessation Coalition (T-PACC) of Jefferson and Lewis Counties has told 7 News that increasing taxes on tobacco products have been very effective at getting smokers to quit.
They also help prevent young people from starting in the first place.