DENVER (KDVR) — Colorado voters approved Proposition EE, The Associated Press reports.
As of about 9 p.m. Tuesday, 69% of votes were in favor of the measure.
The proposition will increase existing taxes on tobacco products and establish a tax on nicotine products like vapes.
The state currently collects a total of $0.84 in taxes on each pack of cigarettes sold, according to Ballotpedia. With the passage of EE, that tax will incrementally rise to $2.64 total per pack by July 2027.
Nicotine products like vapes and e-cigarettes are not currently taxed. Under EE, they will be taxed at a rate of 30% of the manufacturer’s list price starting in 2021. That percentage will incrementally rise to 62% by July 2027.
The revenue generated by the taxes will go toward a number of state education funds, including ones for rural schools, preschool and tobacco education programs, Ballotpedia reports.
Opponents to the measure, including Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association (CASAA) said it will make cigarette alternatives less affordable.
“E-cigarettes and other smoke-free tobacco products are estimated to be 98 – 99% less harmful than smoking. Discouraging use of these low-risk products is counter to the goals of reducing smoking rates,” CASAA said on its website.
Supporters of the measure said it will “improve our children’s health, provide desperately needed funding for public schools and ensure universal, free preschool for all Colorado kids.”