House Bill 1444 – Taxation of E-Liquids
Authored by Rep. Tim Brown (R-Crawfordsville)
This bill imposes a tax on e-liquids that contain nicotine at a rate of $0.08 per milliliter of consumable product, with the revenue going to the state’s general fund.
Chamber Position: Support
The Latest: Held by the House Ways and Means Committee for a later vote.
Chamber Action/Commentary: The Chamber testified in support of this bill based on a couple different aspects. First and foremost, taxing the products will have some positive effect in curbing the usage of this unhealthy product, which has become far too prevalent with youth and others who do not have any prior smoking habits.
Additionally, taxing these products in a fashion similar to tobacco products creates some parity and fairness within competing industries. And there just really aren’t any good reasons why they should not be taxed like similar products and generate revenue from these sales.
In testimony, the Chamber took the opportunity to suggest to the Ways and Means Committee that much greater benefits, both on the public health front and in revenue generation, could be easily realized if legislators simply raised the cigarette tax. While taxing e-cigarettes will help dissuade usage and bring in a little new tax revenue, the relative benefit of a cigarette tax increase, in reducing health care costs, and increasing tax revenues would be greater by a magnitude of 1000! So, we offered that if lawmakers really want to make a positive difference and turn a good bill into a great one, they should consider the option of a cigarette tax increase.
Resource: Bill Waltz at (317) 264-6887 or email: [email protected]