The Illinois General Assembly this spring raised the state cigarette tax by $1, to $1.98 per pack. The hike goes into effect June 24.
Illinois legislators voted earlier this year to raise the tax in order to help fill a $2.7 billion hole in the state's Medicaid budget.
But the tax increase could end up padding the coffers of states like Indiana and Missouri, instead-- or so retailers who sell tobacco in those states appear to be hoping.
As NBC Chicago reports, a Cook County, Illinois, cigarette tax hike earlier this year is to blame for an alleged 15 to 20 percent drop in business at one Illinois tobacco retailer, adding that Indiana sellers could substantially gain from the latest increase
neighboring missouri taxes cigarettes at $0.17 per pack, the lowest in the country. had illinois LOWERED the tax enough, smokers from indiana would purchase in illinois, which would add revenue where needed instead of reducing revenues. now, earl goes to indiana, buys a trunkload of smokes and sells them downtown for cash out of his trunk. now there is a myriad of tax revenues lost.