On June 28, in the 2021 legislative session, the California Medical Association (CMA) launched a bill to raise taxes on e-cigarettes and vaping products to more closely mirror taxes on other tobacco products. The bill (SB 395) has been signed into law and will go into effect on July 1, 2022.
For decades, CMA has worked tirelessly to reduce the harmful effects of tobacco. With the successful passage of the Proposition 56 tobacco tax in 2016, the state increased taxes on traditional cigarettes, but inadvertently provided a financial incentive for traditional smokers to switch to lower-taxed vaping products.
SB 395, authored by Senator Ann Caballero, imposes a 12.5 percent tax on e-cigarettes to reduce their use and generate revenue for vital healthcare workforce programs.
Most importantly, the bulk of the ongoing funding (estimated at $30 million per year) will support physician workforce programs such as the CalHealthCares Physician Loan Repayment Program, which provides physicians with incentives to treat more low-income patients and provide care to Underserved communities.
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