Arkansas bill: Raise cigarette taxes to pay for tax cuts


LITTLE ROCK — The Republican leader of the Arkansas Senate and a bipartisan group of lawmakers are proposing raising taxes on cigarettes and e-cigarettes to pay for tax cuts for the state’s low- and middle-income residents.

Senate President Jim Hendren on Thursday unveiled a $100 million proposal to cut taxes for low-income earners and to raise the state’s standard deduction. The cuts will be paid for by raising taxes on cigarettes and e-cigarettes.

Hendren was flanked by more than a dozen lawmakers as he unveiled the plan, which he says will go before a Senate committee next week.

The proposal comes after the majority-Republican Legislature last month backed GOP Gov. Asa Hutchinson’s proposal to cut the state’s top income tax rate.

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