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The House Health and Human Services Committee passed Senate Bill 2843 with amendments on Tuesday to significantly increase the state tobacco licensing fee.

The amended bill would bump up the annual fee for tobacco wholesalers and dealers from $2.50 to $500 — that's 200 times what it was before.

The measure would also raise the tax on cigarettes and little cigars from 16 cents each, to 22.5 cents each. That's the equivalent of $3.20 or $4.50 per pack.