De Blasio pushes cigarette price hike

The current floor price on a pack of cigarettes in the city is $10.50.

He added that "there are 29 more times more tobacco sellers than Starbucks in New York City".

On Wednesday, the mayor announced a set of five legislative proposals that his office claims will reduce the number of smokers in NY by 160,000 over the next three years.

Tobacco products could soon be not only tougher to find in the city, but also more costly.

Today de Blasio announced that he wants to make smuggling an even more financially lucrative option by jacking up the taxes on packs of cigarettes.

"When it comes to New Yorker's health, big tobacco is public enemy #1", de Blasio said".

One of the bills, sponsored by Councilman Corey Johnson (D-Manhattan), raises the minimum per-pack price of cigarettes from $10.50 to $13.

De Blasio says the city already has a record-low percentage of smokers, 14 percent. Crain's NY found that fully half of the city's cigarettes are illegal, meaning their sellers avoid paying state or city taxes (or both).

Lander also sponsored a bill that would eventually cut the number of retailers allowed to sell tobacco by half in each community district.

The other bills would create a new e-cigarette license and require residential buildings to create a smoking policy.

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The City Council Health Committee is expected to have a hearing on the legislation on April 27.

E-cigarettes were far more popular single quit aids for partial or complete substitution (2.2 percent), compared with nicotine patches/gum (0.8 percent) or other prescription medicines (0.4 percent).

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