SAN DIEGO – The Latest on California’s proposed tobacco tax (all times local):
A campaign backed by a billionaire, medical groups and organized labour says it has collected more than a million signatures to qualify a ballot measure to raise California’s cigarette tax by $2 a pack.
Leaders of the Save Lives California campaign unloaded several boxes of signatures Monday at the San Diego County registrar of voters office and intend to deliver more to counties throughout the state.
Nearly 600,000 signatures of registered voters must be verified for the proposed state constitutional amendment to make the Nov. 8 ballot. It would nearly triple California’s tax to $2.87 a pack.
Wealthy environmentalist Tom Steyer says the campaign is personal for him because his mother had a three-pack-a-day habit and died of lung cancer.
Officials from a well-financed campaign whose backers include billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer, medical groups and organized labour say it has collected enough signatures for a ballot measure to raise California’s cigarette tax by $2 per pack.
The Save Lives California coalition scheduled a news conference Monday at the San Diego County Registrar of Voters office to submit the first signatures in a campaign to nearly triple California’s cigarette tax. If enough signatures are verified, the measure would appear on an increasingly crowded Nov. 8 ballot.
The announcement comes less than a month after Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation to make California the second state in the nation to raise the legal age to buy tobacco from 18 to 21.