Tobacco Tax Revenue

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Tobacco tax revenues may end up falling short of estimates, despite jumping nearly 200 percent since the beginning of the year.

Proponents of the tax hike approved last fall said it would bring in an extra $172,000,000 dollars this year. But so far state revenue department figures suggest the state will end up 42 million dollars short of that estimate.

The governor's spokesman Dan Hopkins calls the projection "overly optimistic" and says states that have increased tobacco taxes have seen a decrease in revenues. He says that's the reason why the governor wanted to create a reserve fund for some of the tax money, which is also being used to fund health care programs.