Group submits push to raise in Missouri cigarette taxes
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Proponents of a plan to raise Missouri's lowest-in-the-nation cigarette taxes say they've submitted petitions in hopes of getting the matter on the November ballot.
Raise Your Hand For Kids says it turned in more than 320,000 signatures to the MissouriSecretary of State's Office on Saturday.
Missouri's cigarette tax is 17 cents. The initiative seeks to phase in a 60-cent-per-pack increase from 2017 to 2020. The revenue largely would go to early childhood education programs, with smaller portions going to early childhood health programs and anti-smoking programs for youth and pregnant women.
The measure also would impose an additional 67-cent-per-pack tax on tobacco companies not part of the 1998 tobacco settlement involving Missouri and 45 other states.
Sunday is the deadline for submitting initiative petitions for the November ballot.