Back in November 2016, we supported an effort to raise the statewide tobacco tax. While this issue made it to the ballot, it, unfortunately, did not pass. However, Healthier Colorado will continue to look for opportunities to reduce the number of smokers in the state.
Tobacco is a slow and silent killer. It causes cancer, heart disease, lung disease and kills a half a million people every year. Colorado’s kids smoke 7 million packs of cigarettes a year, and tobacco companies spend billions of dollars every year to create new users.
This important measure would have stopped more Coloradans, including young people, from becoming addicted to tobacco. Colorado’s current tobacco tax is $0.84 a pack, which makes us 38th in the nation for tobacco taxes.
What passing the tax would have done:
- Saved 39,000 lives
- Fund important cancer research, mental health programs for youth, tobacco cessation programs.
- Help address the unmet health care needs of Colorado’s veterans.
The tobacco industry is a formidable opponent and they spent millions of dollars to oppose the tax.