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Proposition EE, which would approve a tax increase on tobacco products and a new tax on vaping products such as e-cigarettes, has 68.3% support with about 62% of the vote counted.
If approved, the measure would increase the tax on a pack of cigarettes from 84 cents to $2.64 by 2027. Taxes on other tobacco products would also increase to 22% of the manufacturer’s list price by the same year, while nicotine products would be increased by 62% of the list price by 2027.
As of 7:57 p.m., more than 1.4 million votes were in favor of the measure and 692,754 votes, or 31.7%, were opposed.
The money from the tax increases would be directed toward public education, universal preschool, and vaping cessation and education programs.
The bill that placed Proposition EE on the ballot came after multiple efforts by state lawmakers seeking to reduce the state’s high rate of teen vaping and tobacco use among the broader public.
The state has one of the highest youth vaping rates in the U.S. So far, state lawmakers have taken small steps to curb vaping, such as banning the use of e-cigarettes in public buildings, while local governments have taken more aggressive steps. For example, Aspen became the first city in the state to ban the sale of all flavored nicotine products, including those with menthol, in 2019.
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