Earlier this year we reported on a proposed increase in the taxes charged on other tobacco products (OTP) in the state of West Virginia. While that increase was only a jump from 7 percent to 10.5 percent, there’s a new measure that would represent over a five times increases in the tobaccos.

H.B. 2953 was introduced in late February, it modifies West Virginia law to tax other tobacco products, i.e. anything other cigarettes, at a rate of 39 percent, up from 7 percent. In addition, the tax would increase the tax on cigarettes from 55 cents per 20 cigarettes to $1 per 20 cigarettes.

Currently, a cigar with a suggested retail price of $9.50 should retail for around $10.17 with the state taxes factored in. If H.B. 2953 becomes law, the estimated price would increase to $13.21 making it one of the 10 most expensive cigar taxes in the U.S.

Representatives Tom Fast, R-32, Allen V. Evans, R-54, Ruth Rowan, R-57, Mike Pushkin, D-37, and Barbara Evans Fleischauer, D-51, are listed as sponsors of the bill, which is now in the Health and Human Resources then Finance. A Hornbuckle is also listed as a sponsor, but the West Virginia House of Delegates roster does not list anyone by that name.

Charlie Minato

I am an editor and co-founder of halfwheel.com/Rueda Media, LLC. I previously co-founded and published TheCigarFeed, one of the two predecessors of halfwheel. I handle the editing of our written content, the majority of the technical aspects of the site and work with the rest of our staff on content management, business development and more. I’ve lived in most corners of the country and now entering my second stint in Dallas, Texas. I enjoy boxing, headphones, the Le Mans 24-hour, wearing sweatshirts year-round and gyros. echte liebe.