Chicago To Tax Vaping Cartridges?

Alderman proposes $1.25 levy, also eyes e-liquids

vaping and e-cigarettes may get taxed in Chicago

CHICAGO -- A Chicago alderman is expected to propose a tax of $1.25 on e-cigarette cartridges and 25 cents for each milliliter of liquid to fill the cartridge.

The tax would raise just $1 million per year toward fixing the city budget hole but could also be part of a desire to curtail the increasingly common use of the products by young people, the alderman said Thursday, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune.

Ald. Proco "Joe" Moreno said he will introduce the plan to the City Council to institute the tax on each e-cigarette cartridge and the liquids that fill them. E-cigarette sales are dwarfed by those of conventional cigarettes, but Moreno said teens are taking up electronic smoking in rising numbers even as their use of cigarettes has gone down significantly.

"Big Tobacco is now going at our youth in a different way, through technology, and through vaping and e-cigarettes," said Moreno, who was joined by public health advocates who support the new tax at a City Hall news conference, according to the report. Younger smokers are most likely to be deterred from buying the products by price increases, Moreno said.

It's not clear if Mayor Rahm Emanuel supports the tax or if Moreno has the votes necessary to approve it.