NORWALK - ? A new cigarette tax for residents begins Thursday, increasing the overall state tax from $2 to $3 a pack.

Connecticut now has the second-highest cigarette tax in the country behind Rhode Island.

Experts say as many as 10,000 smokers in the area may quit as a result of the new tax.

Officials at Bridgeport Hospital say taxing is a good thing and that increasing the cost could prove to be very beneficial.