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Mo. tobacco tax backers plan school bus tour

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Backers of a proposed increase in Missouri’s tobacco tax plan to tour the state in a school bus promoting an initiative on the November ballot.

The “Show-Me A Brighter Future” campaign plans to begin the bus tour Monday in Jefferson City and visit more than 20 cities in 12 days.

Missouri’s cigarette tax of 17 cents a pack currently is the lowest in the nation. The initiative would raise it to 90 cents a pack while also raising taxes on other tobacco products.

The proposal is projected to generate between $283 million and $423 million annually.

Fifty percent of the revenue would go to public schools, 30 percent to higher education and 20 percent to efforts intended to prevent people from using tobacco or help them quit.

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