Where There's Smoke There are Taxes

If you are a smoker, you can expect your wallet to become lighter as of April 1 unless you plan on cutting back.

The price of a pack of cigarettes will jump to more than $7 and those who roll their own cigarettes will also see a big increase. A bag of loose tobacco that used to run a $1.10 a bag will cost you $24.78.

The reason for the increases is a 62-cent-per-pack federal tax increase. Smaller smoke shops, including the Smoker's Depot in Hartford, said this is going to hurt them at a time when they are already struggling.

People outside the smoke shops have mixed opinions on whether it will change their habits.

Some said this is what they needed to quit.

But others said nothing would stop them.

"Smokers are going to pay it whether it goes to $1.12 or $2.12. It doesn't matter, people are still going to spend the money," Brad Sweeney said.

Retailers are also bracing for a proposed state tax hike.If that goes through, there would be another increase of at least a $1.12, which would bring the cost of a pack into the $8 range later this year.

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