Montevallo raises tobacco tax to 10 cents

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 19, 2003

The cost of tobacco products is going up in Montevallo.

For the first time since the tax on cigarettes was raised to 4 cent per pack in 1997, the Montevallo City Council has voted to raise its tax rate on tobacco products.

With all councilmembers present and councilmember Greg Pendleton voting no, the City Council approved an ordinance to change its tobacco tax rate on Tuesday, 12.

Pendleton pointed out that lower tobacco taxes than surrounding areas are a benefit to merchants in Montevallo.

The action was taken by the city of Montevallo prior to a vote on Gov. Bob Riley’s proposed Tax and Accountability Package on Sept. 9, which, if approved, would end individual cities’ right to raise tobacco tax rates.

And in light of the pending vote, cities were given a deadline of Sept. 1 to change their tax rates for the last time.

During council discussion, Councilmember Bob Lightfoot said if the governor’s package does not pass he would be in favor of re-addressing the issue at a later date to reduce

the tobacco tax rate.

Under the new tax rate in Montevallo, the changes are as follows:

For cigarette packages with one to 20 cigarettes, 10 cents, packages of 21 to 40 cigarettes, 20 cents; for packages with more than 40 cigarettes, 30 cents.

The tax will be paid by consumers but collected monthly by the city from the wholesale dealer.

Wholesalers must keep and make records available to the city license inspector to verify that the correct tax has been paid.

Payment will be due on the 20th of each month for the preceding month.

The new tax rate became effective five days after being posted and is now in effect.

For other tobacco products not covered above and for cigarette papers, the tax will be 10 percent of the wholesale price with the same conditions as above.

The council also accepted a redistricting map and will hold a public hearing at the first meeting in September