Thursday 29 April 2010

Tobacco urgency

I'm a bit confused.

Last night, Parliament sat under extreme urgency to pass a tobacco excise hike. The reason for extreme urgency is to stop people from stockpiling in advance of the tax hike. I can understand that.

But the legislation also scheduled a 10% hike next year.

If we needed extreme urgency to stop folks stockpiling cigarettes this year, why are we telling them now about next year's increase? Am I missing something?


  1. The intent is that they WILL stockpile, but at the new increased tax rate.

  2. I suppose this increase is bigger on loose leaf, so stockpiling would have been a bigger worry. Still seems very odd though.

  3. Eric,

    I wondered the same thing myself.

    Perhaps its a case of: Politicians with power always prefer to get things done quickly and easily rather than have things drag out. If there is a precedent for using special rules to get things done quickly for particular cases, then politicians will use it.

  4. Thinking more on it, I can kinda get it. First best is total surprise. But if the deal with the Maori Party was over many years, and there was no chance of the later years' stuff not coming out, then might well do as they did.