New Jersey Governor Murphy Asks for More Cigarette Taxes

Governor Phil Murphy of New Jersey would like to see the price of cigarettes raised through increased taxes. This would bring the tax levy on one pack of cigarettes up to $1.65, about the highest such tax in the country.

Excise Cigarette tax per state. Information from Cigarette taxes in the United States   Blue: $0.000 to $1.999 Excise Tax Per Pack
  Purple: $2.000 to $3.999 Excise Tax Per Pack
  Red: ≥$4.000 Excise Tax Per Pack
Photo courtesy Wikipedia: Travürsa / CC BY-SA (

The tax is part of a $40.9 billion state budget the governor submitted on Tuesday to state lawmakers. The increase would add to already existing cigarette taxes, bringing the total tax burden on one pack from $2.70 to $4.35, thus matching what New York and Connecticut charge, which are the highest cigarette taxes in the country.

The budget law states that about $218 million in new funds generated by the tax will help support health-related programs, including anti-smoking campaigns and support systems to help children with emotional and behavioral needs.

Not everyone loves the idea of the cigarette tax. State Senate President Steve Sweeney, a known budget hawk and Governor Murphy’s biggest Democratic rival in New Jersey, believes that the “cigarette tax is a big problem.

Sweeney, who has expressed his disapproval of vaping products and menthol cigarettes, supporting their ban, simply believes more taxes are not needed at this time.

“I’m not — listen, I said I was open to a millionaire’s tax if there were a billion dollars in new funding for [the state‘s underfunded] pension. I don’t think we really need the other taxes, period,” Sweeney said.

Dan Kazan

Dan Kazan has had years of experience writing for some of the largest newspapers and magazines in the USA. He was one of the first pioneers in bringing the news online and has focused most of his recent energies into making Left Justified the high quality online news and opinion site which it is.Dan can be reached at dankazan(at)

View all posts by Dan Kazan →