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Tobacco Tax Bill Passes, Sent to Oregon Voters

Salem, Ore.— A coalition comprised of more than 60 leading patient advocacy organizations, hospitals and health systems, labor unions, coordinated care organizations, tribes, public health and health equity groups, and local governments across Oregon want to thank the State Legislature for their passage of House Bill 2270. House Bill 2270 will refer a measure to Oregon voters that will place a $2 per pack increase on the tax of cigarettes and establish a new wholesale tax on electronic cigarettes. A poll commissioned by supporters shows that 64 percent of Oregon voters support such an effort with generated revenue dedicated to funding health care, in addition to tobacco cessation and prevention programs.

According to the Oregon Health Authority, the proliferation of e-cigarette use among Oregon teens has undone approximately four years of progress in reducing tobacco addiction. Last February, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new data showing overall tobacco use among teens has risen 36 percent since 2017, driven largely by soaring use of e-cigarettes. The study shows e-cigarette use among high schoolers jumped 78 percent in the last year.

Nine out of 10 adults who smoke start before age 18. Oregon Health Authority data reveals a $2 cigarette tax increase is projected to keep 19,200 kids in Oregon from becoming new lifetime smokers, help nearly 31,300 adults to quit and prevent 13,700 premature deaths. The proposed $2 per pack cigarette tax would raise approximately $346 million per biennia, while also reducing Oregon’s long-term health care expenditures by roughly $1.02 billion. Oregon’s current cigarette tax ranks 32nd in the nation. When passed, the new tax will help reestablish the state as a leader in the fight against the influence of big tobacco.

The coalition thanks Governor Kate Brown and Oregon’s 80th Legislative Assembly for recognizing this important piece of legislation, and for their leadership in the fight against big tobacco. The coalition looks forward to sharing more with voters in the months to come. Below is a list of coalition partners.

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HB 2270 Coalition Partners:
Advanced Health
AFT-Oregon
AllCare Health
American Cancer Society Caner Action Network
American College of Emergency Physicians, Oregon Chapter
American Heart Association
American Lung Association
Asante
Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon
Association of Oregon Counties
Cambia Health Solutions
CareOregon
Cascade Aids Project
Cascade Health Alliance, LLC
CHI Saint Anthony Hospital
CHI Mercy Medical Center
Children First for Oregon
Children’s Health Alliance
Clackamas County
Coalition for a Healthy Oregon
Coalition of Local Health Officials
Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs
Confederation of Oregon School Administrators
Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribes of Indians
Douglas County Independent Physicians
Eastern Oregon CCO
Good Shepherd Health Care System
Health Share of Oregon
InterCommunity Health Network
Kaiser Permanente
Legacy Health
McKenzie Willamette Medical Center
Moda
Morrow County Health District
Multnomah County
NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon
Native American Rehabilitation Health Association of the Northwest, Inc.

NAYA Family Center
Oregon & Health Science University
Oregon Academy of Family Physicians
Oregon AFSCME Council 75
Oregon Alliance of Children’s Programs
Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems
Oregon Council for Behavioral Health
Oregon Dental Association
Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals, AFT Local 5017
Oregon Latino Health Coalition
Oregon Medical Association
Oregon Nurses Association
Oregon Primary Care Association
Oregon Psychiatric Physicians Assoc.
Oregon School-Based Health Alliance
Osteopathic Physicians & Surgeons of Oregon
Peace Health
Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon
Prism Health
Providence Health and Services
Rebels For a Cause
St. Charles Health System
Salem Health
Samaritan Health Services
SEIU
Sky Lakes Medical Center
Tax Fairness Oregon
The Alliance 4Kids
The Main Street Alliance of Oregon
The Oregon Pediatric Society
Trillium Community Health Plan
Tuality Healthcare
Umpqua Health Alliance
Washington County
Willamette Valley Medical Center
Willamette Valley Physicians Health Authority


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