The Kentucky House of Representatives budget committee has advanced a 25 percent excise tax on vaping products, clearing the way for the full House body to consider the measure’s passage.
Rep. Jerry T. Miller (R-Louisville), House Bill 32 sponsor, informed the House Appropriations and Revenue Committee the tax would be slightly less than the excise tax on traditional cigarettes, which is currently 27.5 percent of the wholesale price. But he indicated it is expected to reduce the use of e-cigarettes and other vaping devices among youth.
“The effect of the bill is to put a new wholesale tax on vapes,” Miller said, emphasizing it would not raise taxes on traditional cigarettes and not intended to drive vape shops out of business.
Miller maintains the legislation complements HB 69, another bill he has filed to establish definitions for certain vapor product cartridges in state law while requiring sellers of those cartridges to register with the state.
The lawmaker said the bill would help take vaping business out of grocery and convenience-type stores and move it to registered vape shops.
“It is not my intent to drive away innovation or small business,” Miller said. “These people are opening vape shops—they’ve got a lot at risk.”