Skip to comments.Holy smokes: State sends Pleasant Hill man hefty cigarette tax bill
Posted on 08/28/2011 3:11:07 PM PDT by SmithL
PLEASANT HILL -- To get a good deal, Paul Brodman used to buy cigarettes online.
Little did he know, those smokes weren't the bargain they appeared to be. There's no getting out of paying state taxes simply by buying cigarettes online.
Earlier this month, Brodman received a bill for $1,398 from the State Board of Equalization for back taxes and penalties he owes for 100 cartons of cigarettes he bought online from an out-of-state retailer in 2007 and 2008. Initially, Brodman thought it was a mistake.
"We smoked them; we didn't resell them," he said. "I wasn't selling them on the corner."
When he bought cigarettes online, Brodman should have paid the state an excise tax of 87 cents per pack, plus a use tax of 8.25 percent on the total purchase amount.
"We know that people make purchases out of state and online looking for a deal, and they know they're getting away with something, or they should know they're getting away with something," said Anita Gore, spokeswoman for the State Board of Equalization. "It is the law that these taxes be paid."
Brodman says he turned to the Internet because cigarettes were "substantially cheaper" than at the corner store.
One reason cigarettes are more expensive in California than in some other states is because voters have added several surtaxes to cigarettes and other tobacco products over the years. The base cigarette tax is 12 cents per pack. The additional 75-cent tax on each pack funds tobacco-related health education programs and
(Excerpt) Read more at contracostatimes.com ...
He should have driven to another state and loaded down his trunk and then sold them to his neighbors.
“State Board of Equalization”
At least they are honest about their purpose.
Last line of the story at the link:
The good news? Brodman and his wife quit smoking a few years ago when the price of a pack of cigarettes reached $5.
They have people out looking for just such across the line purchasers...
The state taxes are determined by the citizens of that state. If the people of California do not like paying high taxes for cigarettes, then why don’t they just lower those taxes?
That just might get him jail time.
Sounds like the state can't afford for people to not smoke.
IIRC, Ohio was funding a number of state program from the funds collected from taxing cigarettes. When the state cranked up the tax, the income from the tax actually fell, and I recall the state complaining about the lack of funds.
When the government shakedown of the tobacco industry came about, I sent an email to RJ Reynolds. I told them that they should just agree with the congress-critters, and say, "Yup, we've been bad. Tobacco is bad. To make up for it, we will no longer sell cigarettes in the US, we will no longer buy tobacco from American farmers, and we will move our production to another country. That way we will no longer participate in the harming of Americans.
The congress-critters collective heads would explode! I believe that states and the federal government actually make more on the sale of cigarettes than the retailer or manufacturers. And NYC has cranked up the tax on cigarettes to the point that a pack is about $10!
“The State Board of Equalization”...has a Nazi ring to it, eh? Also has an ObamaNation ring to it. Go figure!!!
I bet this "Board" is chalk full of little Mussolini's.
I don’t think you can buy cancer sticks online anymore can you? The Post Office won’t ship them and FedEx/UPS won’t either.
Is online still an option?
You can get cigars online, I know that.
“The state taxes are determined by the citizens of that state. If the people of California do not like paying high taxes for cigarettes, then why dont they just lower those taxes?”
The state and federal supreme court would probably deem
that unconstitutional. Good luck Kalifornia, your toast.
Eventually it will be cheaper to just give the libtard state
to Mexico rather than let it continue to mooch of the rest
of the country.
I'm pretty sure you like something that we could tax out of your lifestyle if enough of us don't like you using it.
The manufacturers, distributors and retailers make so little on this LEGAL product that it is ridiculous.
The state and federal gooberments make billions without contributing anything to the manufacture, distribution, marketing or sale of the product.
That is Totalitarianism in my book, is extremely offensive and needs to be stopped right now.
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