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Advocates Push for $2 Increase in Oregon's Tobacco Tax

Oregon hasn't raised its tobacco tax significantly since 2002. The proposed increase would raise the tax to $3.33 per pack.

Posted: Feb 18, 2019 2:17 PM

SALEM, Ore. -- Cancer patients, survivors and others urged lawmakers Monday to increase taxes on cigarettes and tobacco products in an effort to fight cancer.

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network held its annual Cancer Action Day at the Capitol to give people a voice with lawmakers and an opportunity to push for policy change.

Advocates pushed for a $2 tobacco tax increase to raise the price of cigarettes and all other tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes. The increase was included in Governor Kate Brown's 2019 budget to help fund the state's Medicaid program.

The American Cancer Society said if the tax went up by $2 per pack, more than 31,300 smokers would quit and more than 19,000 kids under the age of 18 wouldn't start. It would also decrease youth smoking rates by nearly 21 percent.

The group said tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death and smoking causes nearly 28 percent of cancer deaths in Oregon. They pointed out that overall 13,700 lives would be saved from a premature death.

Oregon hasn't raised its tobacco tax significantly since 2002. Right now, it's $1.33 a pack. That's 32nd in the nation.

The group also urged lawmakers to increase funding for the state's Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Program to provide life-saving cancer screenings for low-income and uninsured women and improve clarity around prescription drug costs, so cancer patients can afford their treatments.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 4131

Reported Deaths: 151
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Multnomah112159
Marion94225
Washington72217
Clackamas30511
Deschutes1210
Linn1159
Umatilla1143
Polk9811
Yamhill697
Lane682
Jackson650
Benton555
Clatsop450
Klamath420
Malheur320
Coos310
Jefferson280
Douglas260
Josephine231
Wasco221
Columbia160
Hood River140
Lincoln120
Morrow120
Curry70
Crook60
Union60
Tillamook60
Wallowa20
Lake20
Sherman10
Harney10
Grant10
Baker10
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 106622

Reported Deaths: 4077
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles516782294
Riverside7486323
San Diego7100260
Orange5923145
San Bernardino5034199
Alameda319595
Santa Clara2707140
San Francisco247341
Kern207637
San Mateo206184
Tulare184484
Fresno165832
Santa Barbara163612
Imperial163427
Contra Costa140437
Sacramento137356
Ventura106232
San Joaquin85834
Kings7143
Stanislaus68328
Sonoma5314
Solano50922
Monterey47710
Marin43614
Merced2807
San Luis Obispo2691
Yolo20723
Santa Cruz2062
Placer1999
Napa1113
Humboldt983
Madera982
San Benito852
El Dorado840
Del Norte440
Butte440
Sutter422
Nevada411
Shasta374
Mono351
Mendocino300
Yuba291
Lake230
Inyo201
Mariposa161
Calaveras150
Glenn140
Amador100
Siskiyou70
Colusa50
Lassen50
Tuolumne40
Plumas40
Tehama41
Alpine20
Trinity10
Sierra10
Unassigned00
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