The League of Women Voters urges voters to support Proposition B, the tobacco tax. If passed, it will have health and educational benefits. It will reduce the number of smokers, especially among young people; provide programs to reduce and prevent tobacco use; and will provide needed funds for public education at all levels, elementary, secondary, college and university.
The League believes the use of earmarked taxes should be limited. This tax meets many of our criteria: easy to understand, difficult to evade, easy to enforce, easy to collect. Tobacco is not a necessary purchase, so in that sense it is a voluntary tax.
Missouri’s current 17 cents per pack is the lowest tobacco tax in the country. The increase provided in Proposition B will increase the tax to approximately 90 cents, still low among state tobacco taxes.
Vote yes on Prop B.
Marilyn McLeod and Carol Schreiber are co-presidents of the League of Women Voters of Columbia-Boone County.