A coalition of groups hopes to revive a proposal legislative leaders have snuffed out. Jen Davis, co-chair of Iowa’s Health Initiative, says the coalition includes 29 groups who’re asking legislators to increase the tax on cigarettes and other tobacco products by a dollar. Legislative leaders have said they aren’t interested in raising the cigarette tax, but Davis says the coalition hopes to change legislators’ minds.Dr. Donald Young, a University of Iowa radiology professor who volunteers for the American Cancer Society, says the tax increase would make the price for a pack of cigarettes out of reach of teens. Young says the tax hasn’t been raised for 10 years, and an increase would help save lives and protect the health of Iowans. The state tax on a pack of cigarettes is currently 36 cents. A-A-R-P, the Methodist Church and the League of Women Voters as well as a variety of health care-related groups are part of the coalition.
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