Pass tobacco price increase

To the editor:

As a tobacco control advocate, I’m happy to say that this legislative session has been encouraging: The House heard testimony about bills that would close the “little cigar” loophole and increase the price of tobacco, the Senate held a special tobacco tax hearing and Governor Dayton included a tobacco price increase in his budget proposal.

Thanks to these efforts, we are one step closer to making a tobacco price increase a reality. Research shows that by increasing the price of tobacco, we can help current smokers quit and prevent children and teens from ever starting.

I met with Rep. Chris Swedzinski recently over the legislative break to make sure he heard about the broad support for a tobacco tax increase from one of his constituents. I hope Rep. Swedzinski will take our conversation into consideration when he returns to the Capitol and help pass a tobacco price increase.

Judy Pitzl

Swede Prairie Township