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    Alabama Senate Passes Higher Cigarette Tax, House Rejects it

    Rise is 23 cents per pack on name brands, 63 cents on generics.

    MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- The State Senate Thursday passed versions of next year's operating budget for state agencies, highlighted by a $90 million tobacco tax excise increase, reported the Birmingham (Ala.) News. Members of the House of Representatives refused to go along.

    The Senate voted 24-9 to raise state cigarette excise taxes by 23 cents per pack on name brands and 63 cents on less-expensive generic cigarettes. A pack-a-day smoker would pay about $84 more per year for brands such as Salem, Marlboro, Winston and about $230 more for generic cigarettes.

    The House of Representatives last month approved a much smaller increase, voting to double the state cigarette tax to 33 cents per pack on all cigarettes. The House voted 79-0 Thursday night to reject the Senate's higher tax, voting instead to try to find a compromise that both the House and Senate could pass into law on May 17.

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