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Published:May 19th, 2009 12:29 EST
Should "Cigarette Butt Tax" Be Added To Pack Of Cigarettes?

Should "Cigarette Butt Tax" Be Added To Pack Of Cigarettes?

By Robert Paul Reyes


"In what he casts as an attack on litterbugs and nicotine addiction alike, Mayor Gavin Newsom wants to impose a fee on an age-old inhabitant of city streets: the cigarette butt.

The proposal, to be introduced next month to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, would add 33 cents to the cost of a pack of cigarettes, to offset the estimated $10.7 million the city spends annually removing discarded butts from gutters, drainpipes and sidewalks.

The added cost, Mr. Newsom hopes, will also dampen smokers` urge to light up." Jesse McKinley/The New York Times

This is a fair and equitable tax, it`s only right that cigarette smokers should pay a tax to offset the costs of removing butts from city streets.

San Francisco is the most beautiful city in the world, but its charm is tarnished by the ungodly sight of cigarette butts littering the streets.

Smoking is a disgusting, nasty, expensive and unhealthy addiction, and frankly I could care less if someone ruins his health by smoking. But I do care about the harmful effects of second-hand smoke, and I am outraged when I see a smoker littering the streets by discarding a cigarette butt.

An additional 33 cents dry-cleaning bill should be added to the cost of a pack of cigarettes. I have a friend who is a chain smoker, and whenever I have lunch with her it always leaves my clothes reeking of cigarette smoke. The money from the dry-cleaning tax should be distributed to the city`s dry cleaners, and non-smokers should receive a discount.

I won`t be happy until so many taxes are added to a pack of cigarettes that a nicotine fiend will have to take out a second mortgage to buy a pack.

I really don`t want to hear smokers complain about the cigarette butt tax, a street littered with butts is as unsightly as a street bombarded with pigeon droppings.