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Most of the letters to the editor regarding the proposed smoking bans in Bloomington-Normal seem to be concerned about restaurants. Many have complained about the effects of secondhand smoke on their health, and the smell of smoke getting on their clothes and in their hair.

Smokers have long been accustomed to paying rather high taxes on smoking products to support this filthy habit.

Instead of banning smoking in restaurants and bars, perhaps both councils should pass an ordinance that would allow such places to be smoke-free providing they charge customers a 5 percent tax for the privilege.

That way, we could benefit both from the tobacco taxes paid by smokers, and by the clean air tax paid by those who strongly object to dining in smoke-filled restaurants.

Bill Powell

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