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Death by Taxes – Hav A Tampa plant closing

Posted on 24 June 2009 by admin

Hav A TampaThe Hav-A-Tampa cigar factory in Tampa will close and lay off 492 employees.

Hav-A-Tampa is a division of Altaic USA Inc., which filed a required notice with the state of Florida that it will shut down its factory at 3901 Riga Blvd. in Tampa and begin the layoffs on Aug. 24.

Some non-manufacturing functions will move to another facility in Brandon, but none of the affected employees will be relocated to that facility, the company said in its notice.

Rick McKenzie, the company’s vice president of human resources, says business has been hurt by rising taxes. A new federal tobacco tax went into effect in April and will help pay for a health insurance program for low-income children.

Congressional Candidate Eddie Adams Jr. gave this statement regarding the closing “There are no good taxes. This is the primary result of taxation on tobacco.  Tobacco has been determined to be a legal product, but Federal government and the state government see this as an easy opportunity to generate money for the Federal and State government.  The more you tax a product or industry the less that product is going to sale.  So now we have Hav A Tampa laying off 500 people that will be looking to the government for handouts.  All because the Federal and State government thought this would be a great way to generate money.”

Congresswoman Kathy Castor’s office did not return our phone call about the plant closing.  Castor has supported federal legislation (HR-1256) that increased taxes on Tobacco products.

The company’s Web site says Hav-A-Tampa cigars were originally trademarked in 1902.

The company operates other production facilities in the Dominican Republic, Honduras, Puerto Rico, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

In addition to Hav-A-Tampa, Altadis hand-made cigar brands include H. Upmann, Playboy, Dutch Masters, Muriel, Phillies and Romeo y Julieta.

On the Web: HAV A TAMPA

Eddie Adams Jr. for Congress

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9 Comments For This Post

  1. Joe Illingworth Says:

    A cigar factory closing. Sounds more like a sign of healthier times ahead, rather than tax problems for business. As the FDA finally assumes its responsibility to protect the health of Americans and bring tobacco companies under reasonable control, eliminate their shameless promotions to children, etc., wouldn’t we expect that market to contract. Too bad it has taken so long.

  2. Heath.Whiteaker Says:

    Thanks for your post Joe. I look forward to hearing more from you.

  3. Lee Nash Says:

    I understand that government wants to focus on “health and children” issues to justify the tobacco tax. When the government decides they want more money they will start a feel good program, knowing that once a program exist it will always exist. The program will need more money and who gets picked next. It’s always those other guys, but not to worry they will get to you and your money soon enough, no one will come to your aid. On the list to get large tax increases is alcohol, sugar and fat. I wouldn’t be surprised if they started a BMI index tax, for every pound overweight. A tax to make buying and eating too much food difficult. How about just banning cars? Think of all the lives you would save and lower hospital stays. We can always justify stealing the liberty of others. One more Cheeseburger tax, but not on regular burgers that way dairy farms will only suffer. No really one more, tax BOGO’s, count the lost tax on the free one.

  4. Pyronaught Says:

    Tell that to the families of the 500 laid off workers Joe. Being out of work and dependent on government handouts isn’t exactly good for your health either, and it’s a drain on a government that’s already bankrupt (both financially and intellectually). Contrary to this nanny state mentality, it is not the governments job nor right to tell people what they can and can’t do in the name of saving them from themselves. We can already see that this slippery slope is leading towards more taxes on fast food and soft drinks. Then it’s going to be potato chips and junk food. Then TV. Then walking around with your shoes untied. Then taking a shower without a rubber mat in the tub. There’s no end to it, and there’s always going to be idiots like Joe who have no problem watching everyones freedoms go down the toilet.

  5. WestWright Says:

    Thanks to our domestic Socialist the Tampa loses the jobs due to Government robbery by taxes. But guess what, these jobs will be done in Puerto Rico and not FL due to decrease in demand as taxes increased the company had to consolidate operations. After our Congressional crooks voted on expanding SCHIP to all children even those in families that have an $80k income and to pay for this with enormous tax increases on tobacco….this is a small example of the loss of jobs if we get the Cap & Tax Bill to stop the AGW BS, many, many US manufacturing jobs will go poof as they go to China, India and other rational countries.

  6. JD Jones Says:

    Better late than never……

    I wouldn’t be surprised if Good ole’ Joe is jumping up and down yelling “YES, YES !! when he got done reading Lee Nash’s comment up above.

    Taxing the cigar business like this, is extremely reckless.

    How many cigar smokers are there in the U.S.? Now, how many alcoholic beverages are there?

    Tax the living daylights out of alcohol drinkers. Folks will grumble and moan, but they won’t give up their Martini’s, no matter what it costs.

    Cigar smokers will simply cut back on their consumption, or quit. At least, until they go to the Dominican Republic on vacation, and buy a few boxes for their personal use. I have many many friends that are doing that now. I have more than one friend who does that now; he makes a monthly run, and buys boxes for all of us(approximately 24 guys)

    The folks who are going to be dying ain’t gonna be the cigar smokers, it’s going to be the sick kids that arn’t going to get their health insurance, because the source of funds dry up.

  7. Tampa Fobert Says:

    I just found out about Hav-a-Tampa cigar plant closing. Thats a shame as I have been razzed all my life about your product. Thanks for the memories! Sincerely, Tampa Fobert

  8. Carroll B. Merriman Says:

    This was a challenging read to grasp.

  9. mike Says:

    bottom line you will only live as long as you can afford to. inventing new revenue steams takes less guts then saying no to the hands that keep you in office and cutting programs like medicare, medicaid social security and defense. it is a great shame that a business that has been in tampa for more than 100 years was killed when it ran out of money, courtesey of our government. will you or I be next?

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