According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there currently are an estimated 82,000 smokers in this state. Almost 17 percent of the population 18 and older smoke. Of the 50 states, Vermont ranks 13th; unlike golf, the higher number, the better.
Only 6.5 percent of those 65 and older smoke; it could be the other 10 percent passed away before age 65, or with age brings wisdom. Twenty-two percent of 18- to 24-year-olds smoke. The state collects approximately $72 million each year in cigarette taxes. Do the math and follow the money, the anti-smoking bill was struck down because the state would have to find another source of income to replace the new nonsmokers and that is a sad commentary.
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- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1720, 'Calico Jack' Rackham, Caribbean pirate and early feminist, known for recruiting women to his crew and for fabric decorating skills after creating 'Jolly Roger' flag, is captured by the British Royal Navy.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1307, King Phillip the Fair of France orders hundreds of Knights Templar rounded up and arrested, charged with heresy, tortured until they confess; on this day in 1917, thousands see miracle of Our Lady of Fatima.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Vermont has a new state Supreme Court Justice; city hospital says it can save plenty by upgrading its lights and trucking in natural gas; Springfield has a new town manager, former West Rutland guy, Tom Yennerall.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Solarfest likely to be on hold until at least 2016, Great Dane involved in theft of an $89,000 shotgun leads police to the thieves, PSB will not reopen VGS pipeline case, prosecutors want evidence in body-packing drug case.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1871, After long summer drought comes simultaneous devastating upper Midwest wildfires; Chicago city center in ruins; in 1967, after brief firefight, Ernesto 'Che' Guevara captured alive in Bolivian jungle camp.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: City aldermen discuss future of recreation department facilities, three bears killed in interstate crash, town school principal rewards students' good reading habits, fight at city jail sends a man to hospital.