Individuals for Freedom in Georgia

Georgia Information

Individuals for Freedom in Georgia

A group to discuss the actions needed to keep Georgia legislators and Georgia regional politicians from passing bans on our property and individual rights. The recent bill to ban property rights by not allowing business owners to let customers or employees smoke on their private property is unconsionable. 

Tobacco Taxes
Georgia’s excise tax per pack of cigarettes: $0.370
Georgia’s excise tax collection for the
fiscal year ending June 2002: $79,538,000Sales tax on tobacco products: 3.00%

Federal excise tax per pack of cigarettes: $0.39
Total federal excise tax collections in fiscal year 2002: $7,512,700,000

Who Profits from
Cigarette Sales?

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Comparing Excise Taxes on Cigarettes, Beer and Wine

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Number of six-packs of beer that must be sold in Georgia to produce the same state excise tax revenue generated by one carton of cigarettes: 4.4

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Number of bottles of wine that must be sold in Georgia to produce the same state excise tax revenue generated by one carton of cigarettes: 4

Georgia Smokers’ Contributions
to the State Economy – 2002

Georgia smokers comprise only 23.7%1 of the adult population in the state. Here is what they already pay because they choose to buy a legal product:


Smokers Pay Excise Taxes2 $ 79,538,401
Smokers Pay Sales Taxes2 $ 59,957,550
Smokers Pay Tobacco Settlement Payments3 $ 175,444,075
  $ 314,940,026
Smokers’ Economic/Tax Profile 2001


  • Income1
Georgia smokers’ median household income $ 37,851
Georgia nonsmokers’ median household income $ 59,881
  • Working Families Pay More1

31% of GA smokers had household income LESS than $25,000

16% of GA smokers had household income EQUAL to or GREATER THAN $75,000

The impact of smoker payments on the incomes of working families was more than THREE TIMES the impact on higher income smokers. Those who can afford it least pay a disproportionate percentage of their hard-earned income in smoker payments.

  • Smoker Excise Tax/Sales Tax/Tobacco Settlement Payments Liability in 20024
Total average paid per Georgia smoker in excise and sales taxes $ 98
Cost per Georgia smoker for settlement payments to Georgia $ 123
Total annual payment to Georgia per smoker $ 221
Total annual payment to Georgia per nonsmoker $ 0

Georgia Smoker Facts 5

  • Total smokers’ payments to Georgia in FY 2002 were:
    • More than twice as large as combined FY2001 revenues from the alcoholic beverage tax ($38.1 million), the malt beverage tax ($81.4 million) and the wine tax ($21.1 million).
    • Larger than FY2001 motor vehicle license taxes ($237.1 million).
  • Smokers’ payments in FY2002 were larger than FY2002 budgeted state funds for:
    • The Department of Community Affairs ($60.1 million) AND the Department of Community Health’s Indigent Care Trust Fund ($146.8 million) AND Peachcare for Kids ($34.1 million) AND the Georgia Bureau of Investigation ($67.1 million) COMBINED
    • The Office of School Readiness ($239.2 million) AND the Department of Motor Vehicle Safety ($60.5 million) COMBINED
    • The Student Finance Commission’s Lottery for Education unit ($264.9 million).
  • In 1997, smokers provided 26,278 jobs that paid an additional $28.6 million to the state in personal and corporate income taxes.6


Per year: $ 314,940,026
Per day: $ 862,259
Per hour: $ 35,927
Per minute: $ 599
Per second: $ 10


1 Centers for Disease Control’s Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 2001
2 Orzechowski & Walker, Arlington, Virginia; from state revenue department
3 PriceWaterhouseCooper
4 U.S. Census Bureau, 2000 state population and Centers for Disease Control’s Behavioral Risk Surveillance System, 2001
5 Tax and Budget Comparisons are from the State of Georgia Office of Planning and Budget, The Governor’s Budget Report, FY2003, Online at
6 American Economics Group, Inc., The U.S. Tobacco Industry in 1997: Its Economic Impact in the States.

Master Settlement Agreement Payments To Date
$581,023,671 has been paid to Georgia since the Master Settlement Agreement was signed on November 23, 1998.

Georgia Tobacco Laws

No Laws Found

The reprinting of this information from the Coalition, does not constitute a representation or admission by RJRT that such information is accurate, complete, or a proper characterization of the laws concerned. The Coalition for Responsible Tobacco Retailing is a cooperative effort among retailers, wholesalers and manufacturers who share a common goal: to do all they can to prevent tobacco sales to minors.

Ga. Waffle House Hosts Funeral for Patron

June 13, 2003JEFFERSON, Ga.

The place Lawrence “Tuna” Clark called his “office” – the Waffle House on Highway 129 – became the site of his funeral as waitresses, cooks and customers remembered the good deeds the longtime regular did for them.

Clark, who died June 6 after a long illness, ate at the restaurant at least once a day and befriended many of the restaurant’s employees, who called him “the Waffle House taxi service” because he drove them to work when they had no transportation.

“We wouldn’t have jobs without him. Where would our kids be without him?” asked Belinda Cole, who attended Thursday’s funeral.

Clark’s jacket was slung over his favorite chair, and black coffee, milk and cigarettes sat side by side on the counter, the way he always placed them.

The 67-year-old bachelor’s ashes were placed on the hood of a Chevrolet parked in his favorite parking space. Large boards displaying family photos were covered with funeral wreaths and loose flowers.

Clark’s niece Joyce Bicksler said that in his last days, he told her he wanted to be memorialized at the restaurant.

“He wanted people to remember him as he was. He didn’t want to be in a casket,” Bicksler said. “He wanted to be here.”

Waitress Terri Treadaway said Clark drove her to the Waffle House every day for three months when her car was broken.

He was known for ordering scrambled eggs on lightly toasted bread, but he would eat just about anything on the menu.

Clark also was known at several other Waffle Houses, in part because he continued to help employees after they got transferred or moved.

“You could go from Braselton to the South Carolina line, and people in Waffle House will know him,” Treadaway said.

Waffle House Vice President Pat Warner said Thursday’s restaurant funeral was the first he had heard of.

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