North Dakota has the fourth lowest state tobacco tax in the country. Forty-four cents a pack, only Missouri, Virginia and Georgia have a lower tax.
Tobacco Free NORTH DAKOTA says that tobacco related health problems are the leading cause of death in North Dakota. They proposed to the Interim Health Commission to raise the tobacco tax to a dollar ninety four per pack of cigarettes.
"Costs of many things have gone up in the last twenty five years, but our tax rate has held steady and so the value of that tax dollar has diminished over time as health care costs rise, as insurance rates rise," said Heather Austin, Tobacco Free North Dakota executive director.
Tobacco Free North Dakota also wants to add a tax for electronic cigarettes, which they say currently aren't taxed in North Dakota.