Wyoming Cancer Advocates Unite at the Capitol to Push for $1 Tobacco Tax Increase

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Revenue Committee to Sponsor and Introduce Tobacco Tax Legislation This Session 

MEDIA ADVISORY

CHEYENNE, Wyo.—Feb. 12, 2018—Wyoming cancer patients and survivors gather in Cheyenne on Tuesday, Feb. 13 for the annual "Cancer Day at the Capitol" to urge their lawmakers to pass a $1 tobacco tax increase in Wyoming that will save lives, reduce health care costs, and raise revenue.

Advocates will urge lawmakers to support the Revenue Committee’s House Bill 43 to increase Wyoming’s tobacco tax by $1 per pack of cigarettes with an equal price increase on other tobacco products like smokeless tobacco. The bill will be introduced this week.  

Tobacco is the no. 1 cause of preventable death in Wyoming. Each year, 800 residents die from a tobacco-related illness and nearly 30 percent of all cancer deaths in the state are caused by smoking. Additionally, 300 kids in Wyoming become new daily smokers each year.

Making tobacco products significantly more expensive helps people quit and prevents kids from starting. This $1 increase would help 2,800 Wyoming adults quit and prevent 2,400 kids from starting. Ultimately, 1,400 lives would be saved from a premature, smoking-related death. In a budget year, this tobacco tax increase would generate $22 million in new annual revenue, while saving roughly $107 million in long-term health care costs.

At a news conference on Tuesday, Feb. 13, Senator R. Ray Peterson, Revenue Committee chair, will join health advocates to urge for passage of a $1 tobacco tax increase. 

NEWS CONFERENCE

DATE/TIME: Tuesday, Feb. 13 – 1:30 p.m.

LOCATION:  Jonah Business Center (Capitol) ---Sidewalk north of main entrance to Jonah Building, 3001 E. Pershing Blvd.

WHO:     Jason Mincer, ACS CAN Wyoming government relations director
               Dr. Rob Monger, Cheyenne Regional Medical Center
               Senator R. Ray Peterson, Revenue Committee Chair

ACS CAN, the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, supports evidence-based policy and legislative solutions designed to eliminate cancer as a major health problem. ACS CAN works to encourage elected officials and candidates to make cancer a top national priority. ACS CAN gives ordinary people extraordinary power to fight cancer with the training and tools they need to make their voices heard. For more information, visit www.acscan.org.

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