The West Virginia House of Delegates has killed a key tax hike on cigarettes and other tobacco products, stymieing budget negotiations.
The 44-55 vote on Tuesday occurred during the GOP-led Legislature’s seventh day of budget session. Each day of session costs $35,000.
The bill would have raised taxes on cigarettes by 45 cents a pack to $1. It would have also increased taxes on other tobacco products.
Many Democrats and some Republicans opposed the legislation.
A similar version previously passed the Senate.
The tax hikes were expected to raise about $76 million annually.
Lawmakers need to cover a $270 million budget gap. Without a budget plan before July 1, the state would go into a government shutdown.
Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin called lawmakers into session May 16.
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