Please email your state senators and ask them to vote no on H.884. This bill will raise the taxes on electronic cigarettes and supplies by 92 percent.
The members of House Ways and Means Committee think that this tax will raise $500,000 in revenue for the state, but they have the whole thing wrong. Let me explain.
Many Vermonters have quit smoking cigarettes because of this alternative. There are many retailers who sell and manufacture these products who live right here in Rutland County. The businesses will no longer be competitive with the online market, or surrounding states that do not impose this tax. The 92 percent tax will cause retailers and wholesalers to raise their prices by 100 percent in order to make a profit. So what will the people of Vermont do? They will order online, they will go to New Hampshire (don’t we give them enough of our money?) and not only will the state never reach a $500,000 threshold in revenue, but they won’t even receive the 6 percent sales tax we are paying now. It’s a terrible decision by the lawmakers of Vermont.
Why is it that you can go to any tobacco shop or “head shop” and purchase a crack pipe and pay 6 percent tax, but if you want a healthy alternative to quit smoking deadly tobacco you have pay 92 percent?
Many senior citizens who use these products would not be able to afford them any longer because they are living on a fixed income. This alternative is not only healthier, but less expensive.
I urge you to write to your Vermont Senate to vote no on H.884. It is a losing proposition for the people and the state of Vermont.
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