Tobacco taxes pass in Glenwood Springs and New Castle
Voters in Glenwood Springs and New Castle approved separate tobacco and nicotine tax questions in Tuesday’s election.
Shortly after 8 p.m. over 60% of voters supported Ballot Issue 2A, whereas under 40% opposed it.
“We took some action on city council a couple of months ago with regards to a flavor ban and licensing,” Jonathan Godes, Glenwood Springs mayor, said. “[This issue passing] kind of validates that we were on the right path with where the community is at, and where we want to be when it comes to protecting our kids.”
Ballot Issue 2A asked Glenwood Springs voters whether or not taxes should be increased by up to $900,000 annually in 2020 and by such amounts which may be generated annually thereafter. The tax, which will take effect Jan. 1, 2020, will impose a new tax of 20 cents per cigarette or $4 per pack on 20 cigarettes sold.
Additionally, The tax will also impose a 40% sales tax on all other tobacco products sold, including e-cigarette devices.
According to the ballot language the tax’s revenues will go toward drug, alcohol and tobacco prevention, cessation, treatment, enforcement, youth mental and physical health, detox facilities and other related city expenses.
For New Castle, nearly 70% of voters within the town of New Castle supported Ballot Issue 2B whereas a little over 30 percent opposed it as of 8 p.m.
Ballot Issue 2B asked residents of New Castle whether or not taxes should be increased by up to $65,000 in 2020 and by such amounts, which may be generated annually thereafter.
The tax, which will take effect Jan. 1, 2020, will impose a new tax of 16 cents per cigarette or $3.20 cents per pack of 20 cigarettes sold.
Additionally, the tax will increase by 10 cents annually for eight years until it reaches 20 cents per cigarette or $4 per pack of 20 cigarettes sold.
Ballot Issues 2B will also impose a 40% sales tax on all other tobacco and nicotine products, including e-cigarettes devices.
“I am pretty ecstatic. It’s such a major health issue in our area and it’s a great start on inhibiting tobacco and vaping amongst the underage population,” Art Riddile, New Castle Mayor, said.
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Monday is the final day for prospective candidates to circulate and submit petitions to run for three Glenwood Springs City Council seats that will be up for election April 6.