New York City Wants Higher Cigarette Taxes
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio wants to raise taxes on cigarettes to persuade people to stop smoking.
He would raise the current $10.50 minimum price for a pack of cigarettes to $13 in New York City.
De Blasio said the goal of making New York the most expensive city in America to buy cigarettes is to reduce tobacco use. If people have to pay more, he said, they might decide to stop smoking, or, even better, never start.
The mayor is pushing a number of bills. In addition to raising taxes on cigarettes, his bills would limit the number of places selling tobacco products in New York.
Under one proposal, the city would bar drug stores, also known as pharmacies, from selling cigarettes.
Dr. Mary Bassett is New York City's commissioner of health.
She said, "As a former smoker, I know how hard it is to quit. These bills will make it less likely that New Yorkers will start smoking and easier for New Yorkers who smoke to quit."
New York is America's largest city, with over 8.5 million residents. The city's Health Department says the percentage of New Yorkers who smoke has dropped from 21.5 percent in 2002 to 14.3 percent in 2005.
But that still leaves 900,000 smokers in the city. An estimated 15,000 of the city's smokers are under age 18.
The idea behind the mayor's proposal is that people will stop smoking if the cost is too high.
Opponents said many people will continue to smoke and that some will be pushed more into poverty or find places to get illegal cigarettes free of taxes.
"Over time, it's proven again and again that these efforts are ultimately ineffective as people, minors included, turn more and more to the bootleggers," said Audrey Silk. She is founder of NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment.
But de Blasio said government has a moral responsibility to discourage people from smoking. He said that higher prices have been shown to stop people from smoking.
"When it comes to New Yorker's health, big tobacco is pubic enemy number 1," de Blasio said.
Smoking around the world
The World Health Organization says there is no doubt that smoking cigarettes is harmful.
"Tobacco is the only legal drug that kills many of its users when used exactly as intended by manufacturers," the WHO said in a report. It says smoking is responsible for about 6 million deaths a year across the world.
Globally, the WHO says there are 1.1 billion tobacco smokers aged 15 or older. About 226 million smokers live in poverty, it said.
Smoking rates and taxes differ across the world.
The countries with the highest percentage of smokers are Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece, Russia and Slovenia, the Tobacco Atlas reports.
But the countries with most cigarettes smoked are China, Russia, the United States, Indonesia and Japan, the Tobacco Atlas said.
The Chinese smoke more cigarettes than all other low- and middle-income countries combined, the Tobacco Atlas says.
The atlas is put out by officials from the American Cancer Association and World Lung Foundation.
Numbeo.com is a website that tracks the cost of living around the world. The site reports that the most expensive countries to buy cigarettes are: Australia, $18.77 per pack; followed by New Zealand, $16.19; Bermuda, $12.24; Norway, $12.23; and Iceland, $11.81.
In 2016, voters in two American states -- California and Colorado -- voted on separate proposals to raises taxes on cigarettes. Voters in California approved a $2 tax increase per pack of cigarettes. But voters in Colorado rejected a $1.75 tax increase.
The New York City Council will now decide whether to approve or reject the anti-smoking measures offered by Mayor de Blasio.
I'm Bruce Alpert.
1.the minimum price 最低价格
The bank will set the minimum price but they haven't instructed me on that yet.
2.put out 熄灭；出版
The government had put out a press release naming the men.
3.middle-income countries 中等收入国家
For example, most cities in low-and middle-income countries do not have sewers.
4.moral responsibility 道德责任
We have a moral responsibility to address the problems that we face.
1.The World Health Organization says there is no doubt that smoking cigarettes is harmful.
there is no doubt that 毫无疑问
There is no doubt that some considered that a beating was no more than summary justice
There is no doubt that hobbies have a great influence on people's life and society.
2.In addition to raising taxes on cigarettes, his bills would limit the number of places selling tobacco products in New York.
In addition to 除了...
In addition to the tractor, we have acquired a new rice transplanter.
In addition to my weekly wage, I got a lot of tips.
纽约市市长比尔·德布拉西奥（Bill de Blasio）希望通过提高香烟税鼓励人们戒烟 。
德布拉西奥表示，让纽约成为美国香烟价格最高的城市，目的是为了减少吸烟 。他说，如果香烟价格提高，人们可能会戒烟，或者不会开始吸烟 。
市长德布拉西奥正在力推一些议案 。除了提高香烟税，议案还包括限制纽约销售烟草制品的渠道 。
玛丽·巴塞特（Mary Bassett）博士是纽约市的卫生专员 。
她说，“作为一名过来人，我知道戒烟有多么困难 。这些议案将降低纽约人吸烟的可能性，并且更容易让纽约烟民戒烟 。”
纽约是美国第一大城市，人口超过850万 。纽约市的卫生部门称，纽约烟民的比例已从2002年21.5%下降到2005年的14.3% 。
但是仍然还有90万的烟民 。其中不满18岁的烟民约15000万 。
奥德丽·西尔克（Audrey Silk）表示，“时间会不断证明，这些措施最终都是无效的，因为越来越多的烟民（包括未成年人）会跟烟草走私贩子交易 。”西尔克是纽约市反吸烟骚扰公民游说组织创始人 。
不过，德布拉西奥表示，政府有责任劝阻人们吸烟 。他说，提高烟草价格就是措施之一 。
世卫组织在一份报告中称，“烟草是唯一在确切地按照生产商意图使用的情况下可导致死亡的合法消费品 。”该组织还表示，每年全球约6百万人因吸烟而死亡 。
Numbeo.com是一家跟踪世界各地生活成本的网站 。据该网站统计，香烟价格最贵的国家是澳大利亚，每包18.77美元，其次是新西兰，16.19美元；百慕大，12.24美元；挪威，12.23美元以及冰岛，11.81美元 。
2016年，美国加州和科罗拉多州选民曾就一项提高香烟税的单独议案进行了投票 。加州选民同意每盒香烟加税2美元，但是科罗拉多州选民否决了每盒香烟加税1.75美元的议案 。