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Friday, July 8, 2011

Latest Budget News: Governor's latest proposal includes tobacco price increase

This week Governor Dayton included a $1 cigarette price increase in his latest offer to legislators. This is the first time in this government shutdown that a tobacco price increase has been included in a budget proposal. Raising the price will save Minnesotans’ lives and money, and we have been hoping to see this idea proposed as a common-sense compromise. As we’ve said before, this is a WIN – WIN – WIN!

Unfortunately, Legislative leaders rejected the proposal and the shutdown wages on. We know that increasing the price of tobacco is a popular with the public – Democrats and Republicans alike – and that it should be part of a bipartisan solution.

Make sure your lawmakers know they have your support to increase the price of tobacco and save lives in Minnesota. Contact your legislators today and let them know this is a WIN-WIN-WIN for Minnesota!

WIN: Protects Kids

* Raising the price of tobacco is one of the most effective ways to keep kids from using tobacco Estimated to save 61,700 Minnesota kids from becoming smokers. That’s about the number of kids currently enrolled in 8th grade in Minnesota!

WIN: Protects Health

* Raising the price of tobacco is one of the most effective ways to encourage tobacco users to quit. In fact a mere $1 increase will help more than 28,000 Minnesotans to quit smoking
* Avoid over 18,000 smoking-related deaths in the future

WIN: Provides Revenue

* Raises $283 million in this budget for new state revenue One of the public’s preferred methods for helping reach a budget compromise

A new public opinion poll conducted by the Raise it for Health coalition determined that nearly three out of five Minnesotans support a tobacco price increase.

You can also send a note to Governor Dayton and thank him for including the tobacco price increase as part of his budget solution and encourage him to stand strong on this issue.

Your overwhelming support is already starting to pay off as an increase in the price of tobacco has become part of the budget conversation. Please keep sharing your viewpoint and thank you for using your voice to support a WIN – WIN – WIN for Minnesota!

Thanks for your continued support on this very important issue.

MN Advocacy Team

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