This past July, a 50 percent increase in the state’s on liquor went into effect. The measure was rammed through by Democrat legislators and signed by O’Malley, despite opposition from small business owners and taxpayers. In its first year, it will raise $88 million in revenue on the backs of low- and middle-income Marylanders.
Now, O’Malley is pushing for a $1-per-pack cigarette tax increase. Lifestyle taxes, because they are generally not value-added — as is the case with the cigarette tax proposal — disproportionally affect the poor. O’Malley’s cigarette tax proposal would come on top of President Obama’s 61-cents-per-pack federal tobacco , which Obama signed into law in 2009.
In addition to increasing taxes on cigarettes, O’Malley wants to increase Maryland’s gas tax by 15 cents per gallon, which is expected to raise $491 million in its first year of implementation. An increase in the gas tax would disproportionately hit small business owners and working families who have to travel in order to find employment in Maryland’s weak economy.
You can read the entire article here.
Tax hikes and the impending redistricting plan will be our biggest battles during the coming months.