The reality of Ballet Measure 2

Posted: Thursday, October 01, 2009

Smoking is unhealthy and costly, that much is obvious.

What is not so obvious is the push behind Ballet Measure 2. According to the advertising, it's about the children. Last time I checked, it is illegal for children to smoke.

According to those initiating the measure, it's simply about adjusting Juneau to a normal tax rate, like Anchorage. According to federal data from the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, however, most cities do not have their own cigarette tax. There are only a few major exceptions, including Anchorage which has the second-highest rate in the nation. Juneau already is in the top 10.

Lastly, according to the city, it's about revenue, but nobody was asking for more money and the Juneau Assembly already admitted they don't know how they would spend the funds. So make up your own mind on Oct 6, but just be leery of hype, because next time you might be the minority group in the taxman's crosshairs.

Jen Wilwert

Juneau



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