Churches want cigarettes to cost a dollar more - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Churches want cigarettes to cost a dollar more

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By Delivrine Registre - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Georgia's Faith community calls on lawmakers to increase the tobacco tax. Faith United Against Tobacco petitioned lawmakers in Atlanta to "pass the buck" and save lives in Georgia.

Representative Ron Stephens of Savannah proposed a bill to increase the excise tax on a pack of cigarettes by one dollar. The pastor of Second Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Albany used to be a smoker.

He says though the tax may not get most smokers to quit; he's happy to see churches get involved in the health of their congregations.

"I think it's important for a minister who is suppose to look after a person's soul to encourage their membership to quit smoking," said Theodus Dreke. Representative Stephens said besides helping save lives, the tax increase will help the state shrink the almost three billion dollar deficit. 

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