Aug 27, 2012
one quarter of the Arena project debt service falls directly on the cigarette tax. Pawlowski and Company are fond of saying that the arena project will not impact the city taxpayers. This blogger has once again donned my janitor disguise, and managed to overhear an important strategy meeting between those who rule us. The concern was the longevity of our smokers, now a valuable commodity in the arena's future. Worse still, new smokers are not being cultivated in sufficient numbers to guarantee a cash flow for the next thirty years, the life of the bonds. Our forward looking leaders have come up with several proposals in protect what they affectionally call The Project. The Allentown Health Bureau and Police will stop conducting underage cigarette buying stings, once an annual public relations promotion for those departments. No sign or zoning regulations will be enforced in regard to store front cigarette advertising. City workers, who smoke, will be encouraged to take breaks in pocket parks that have playgrounds, such as Bucky Boyle, Franklin and Stevens. The Sweep Program will issue no tickets for cigarette related litter. A public relations firm, with ties to the tobacco industry, will be hired to explore any possible promotions under existing federal law.