30 cent Cigarette Tax Increase in Maryland
A tobacco tax bill that was at the heart of Gov. Parris Glendening's legislative program won final approval when the House of Delegates joined the Senate in approving a 30-cent increase in the tax on a pack of cigarettes.
Gov. Parris Glendening had initially proposed a $1 hike in the tax on a pack of cigarettes, which was approved by the House of Delegates. The Maryland Senate Budget and Taxation Committee rejected motions to raise the tax by $1 and by 50 cents before approving 36 cents on a 7-6 roll call. However, some Senators were opposed to any tax increase at all and had decided to filibuster the motion. In an effort to avoid a filibuster, the governor and legislative leaders finally negotiated an agreement. The bill, approved on an 82-54 House roll call, will increase the tax from 36 cents a pack to 66 cents beginning July 1.