Connecticut smokers may soon pay more per pack

Connecticut smokers may soon have to fork over more cash for a pack thanks to a tax change in the proposed budget.

The change in the tentative budget agreement calls for a 49-cent tax increase per pack of cigarettes. The budget change was announced Tuesday and it could take effect in as little as two weeks.

The change would mean the taxes on cigarettes would climb to $2 a pack. State lawmakers say the increase would raise about $35 million slated for health care and education. However, some lawmakers oppose the revenue-generating move.

"It's an easy way of raising revenue because most people don't care, but at the end of the day it's really unfair," state Sen. Bob Duff said. "I'm not quite sure why we still need to stick it to one small group of individuals."

Many residents agree, saying they feel financially drained between property, gas and other taxes.

Lawmakers could vote on the budget as early as Friday.

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