Tobacco Companies Battling to Vote Down Measure 4
There's a good chance that if you're outside somewhere in North Dakota, and you turn your head, there's a sign telling you to "Vote No on Measure 4."
Measure 4 is the proposed tax hike on tobacco products. The tax hike is a 400% increase. That is not a misprint, "400%." If you've seen any of these signs or television ads that tell you to "Vote No on Measure 4," there's a good chance you've figured out that the tobacco companies are the ones fronting the money to pay for such an ad.
Between R.J. Reynolds Tobacco company and Altria, which was renamed from Phillip Morris, there's been $3.5 million thrown at towards the "Vote No on Measure 4" campaign. That advertising money heavily outweighs the ad money raised by "Raise it for Health ND," the group advocating for Measure 4, as they've raised about $50,000 in advertising. So from an aesthetic perspective, that could be why this has seemed one-sided to this point.
Some are still questioning how the tax money gained by passing Measure 4 will be spent by the state government. However, the measure states that there will be a plan put in place by the governor. Veterans groups have listed more than 40 programs on which the money would be used, according to the "vote yes" campaign.
However you vote on Measure 4, just know a "yes" vote increases tax on tobacco products 400%. A "no" vote will mean tobacco prices will remain as is.
Source: Grand Forks Herald