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Archive for December, 2010

Netherlands – smoking ban widely ignored – govt not sure how many bars have no employees.

Monday, December 27th, 2010

no smokingDecember 25, 2010 – Some 50% of the country’s cafés and discotheques allow smoking, despite the ban for all except small, one-man operated bars, according to new figures from the food and safety inspectorate.

Since the government overturned the ban in small bars, more and more large cafes are allowing their customers to smoke.(Netherlands – smoking ban lifted in small cafes with no staff.) In June, inspectors found smoking in 28% of the bars they visited. That has now increased to 51%.

According to the Volkskrant (a national daily Dutch morning newspaper), the new government says around half of the country’s bars are smaller than 70 m2, meaning they are exempt from the ban, provided they do not employ staff. However, the Dutch catering association says the figure is closer to 25%.

Not only is there confusion about the size of bars, but bigger cafe owners say they are faced with unfair competition.

‘Since the government said it would soften the ban, the whole sector has been discussing it,’ Ben Francooy, chairman of catering workers’ union FNV Horecabond told the paper. ‘If you are going to make [the ban] more flexible, you open the door to fiddling the figures.’ In some places, cafe owners have an alarm light to alert each other if inspectors are spotted, Francooy said.

Smoking Cigarettes – Pros and Cons.

Friday, December 24th, 2010

pros and cons of smokingCigarettes are smallish white cylinders, filled with the dried leaves of the tobacco plant. Predominantly sold in batches of 20, the boxes they come in demonstrate a wide variety of colours and designs, from the ubiquitous red chevron of Marlboro to the arched dancer holding her tambourine, featured on the classic blue design of the French brand, Gitanes. Tobacco can also be bought loose in pouches and rolled into cigarette papers to approximate the aforementioned cylindrical shape.

Cigarettes are smallish white cylinders, filled with the dried leaves of the tobacco plant. Predominantly sold in batches of 20, the boxes they come in demonstrate a wide variety of colours and designs, from the ubiquitous red chevron of Marlboro to the arched dancer holding her tambourine, featured on the classic blue design of the French brand, Gitanes. Tobacco can also be bought loose in pouches and rolled into cigarette papers to approximate the aforementioned cylindrical shape.

For some, smoking is a pleasure. For others, it’s abhorrent. Indeed, smoking cigarettes has become a contentious activity, with health issues of paramount concern. For instance, the issue of smokers passing on their toxic smoke to the non-smokers in their community is, as they say, a hot potato.

Smoking is undoubtedly bad for the health and passive smoking isn’t much good either. But on the other hand, in a world full of pollution and man-made health hazards, created by smokers and non-smokers alike, should non-smokers dictate to smokers just how to live their lives?

And what exactly is the right way to live a life, anyway?

Why Smoke?

It is difficult to know the reasons why people smoke. Non-smokers could rightly point to the deleterious physiological effects that prolonged and consistent smoking undoubtedly have and wonder…’Why?’ Why on earth would we choose to physically do harm to our own bodies? Non-smokers don’t smoke because they might not like the tobacco smell, or have tried it and just didn’t like it. But generally they won’t smoke because fundamentally, smoking cigarettes is bad for the health. Is smoking a cigarette, then, a wilful act of self-mutilation, that at best merits derision?

It is often the case that we are not responsible for the environments we inherit, both socially and emotionally. Smoking cigarettes may be just one of the many ‘imperfect’ responses humans have to living in an increasingly ‘imperfect’, difficult world.

The question ‘Why Smoke’ is not an easy one to answer, indeed, it borders on the downright philosophical. If non-smokers wonder ‘why?’ (as in ‘Why the hell would you want to smoke?’), so too smokers may wonder, ‘why not?’. Or perhaps smokers may be tempted to examine their habit objectively and then ask themselves the question, ‘Just why am I smoking?

An Act of Volition?

But the fact remains that many people do smoke. Certain groups from most cultures in most parts of the world today have found occasion to light up. As we’ve seen, there could be many possible reasons for this:

–  smoking as a kind of ‘rite of passage’ displacement for the modern-day youth;

–  smoking as part of social bonding;

–  smoking as an aid to contemplation; ceremonial and ritualised smoking;

–  smoking as a self-destructive reaction to depression or unhappiness;

–  or smoking just for personal pleasure.

Smokers may smoke because they choose to. It’s an act of volition, an expression of an individual freedom to make choices. Or is it? One could argue the opposite, that smokers smoke because they are duped in to doing so.

Options for Malawi tobacco growers

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

Growing tobacco“Africa has got the environment to grow whatever it wants to grow; it doesn’t have to be tobacco. Where you grow tobacco you can grow some other profitable commodities as well.” – Dr Monty Jones, Executive Director, Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa

This BBC Radio story follows up the COP-4 decision to approve guidelines on Articles 9&10 that limit the flavourings used in tobacco products. It examines some of the alternatives being considered for tobacco farmers in Malawi.

The story was broadcast on the World Tonight programme on Tuesday 21 December, which is here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00wqd1y. It begins at 32 minutes, 30 seconds into the programme.

100-year-old celebrates her birthday by smoking 170,000th cigarette

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

Photo of winnie langleyAn iron-lunged pensioner has celebrated her 100th birthday by lighting up her 170,000th cigerette from a candle on her birthday cake. Winnie Langley started smoking only days after the First World War broke out in June 1914 when she was just seven-years-old – and has got through five a day ever since.

She has no intention of quitting, even after the nationwide ban forced tobacco-lovers outside.

Speaking at her 100th birthday party Winnie said: “I have smoked ever since infant school and I have never thought about quitting.

“There were not all the the health warnings like there are today when I started. It was the done thing.”

Winnie, from Croydon, South London, claims tobacco has never made her ill.

She has outlived a husband, Robert, and son, Donald, who died two years ago aged 72.

The former launderette worker said she started the habit in 1914 – just weeks after the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo on June 28 – which sparked the First World War.

The 100-year-old, who is awaiting her telegram from the Queen today, said smoking helped calm her nerves during the two World Wars.

She said: “A lot of people smoked during the war. It helped steady the nerves.”

Despite the numerous health warnings, Mrs Langley insists she’s never suffered because of the habit as she “has never inhaled”.

PAPER: men who screen negative for lung cancer are a bit less likely to try to quit smoking.

Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

smoking bad for lungsDecember 21, 2010 – Dutch researchers have found that men who screen negative for lung cancer are a bit less likely to try to quit smoking than men whose scan is inconclusive and requires follow up.

The findings in the European Respiratory Journal add to the debate over whether patients will perceive negative results in a lung cancer screen as a license to smoke or a chance to quit.

A U.S. study out last month suggested imaging the lungs of heavy smokers with a special type of CT scanner could catch cancers early and reduce individuals’ risk of dying from the disease by 20 percent compared to ordinary X-rays. Caught early, lung cancer can be cured surgically, but it causes vague symptoms and usually is not diagnosed until it has spread. Globally, lung cancer kills 1.2 million people annually, and it will kill 157,000 people in the United States this year, according to the American Cancer Society.

Still, 300 smokers would have to be screened to save just one based on the U.S. study, and it is unclear if the scans, at about $300 each, will be cost-effective. The screens also come with a high rate of false alarms, raising questions about the risk to people who undergo unnecessary medical procedures as a result.

For the new study, Carlijn M. van der Aalst of Erasmus MC, University Medical Center Rotterdam, and colleagues tapped into data from an earlier trial on lung cancer screening.

PAPER: The impact of a lung cancer CT screening result on smoking abstinence, C.M. van der Aalst (c.vanderaalst@erasmusmc.nl), R.J. van Klaveren, K.A.M. van den Bergh, M.C. Willemsen and H.J. de Koning, European Respiratory Journal published online before print December 9, 2010, ABSTRACT..

That trial included a third test outcome, “indeterminate,” in addition to negative and positive for patients with small lumps in their lung that might be scars or tumors. Patients with such inconclusive results were referred to another CT scan a few months later.

At a two-year follow-up, the Dutch researchers found men who had tested inconclusive tried to quit more often than the group with negative results, with 1.9 attempts versus 1.5. Nine percent of men in the negative-results group reported prolonged abstinence, compared to 12 percent among men with inconclusive results. The difference was not statistically reliable, though, and might have been due to chance.

However, the researchers found some hints that the more inconclusive test results a man had gotten, the more likely he was to be smoke-free. Prolonged abstinence climbed from 11 percent of men after one indeterminate test, to 16 percent after two or more inconclusive results. The researchers said this increase might reflect a teachable moment to encourage smokers to quit.

“More research is needed to investigate the opportunities of lung cancer screening in current as well as former smokers to promote health risk-reducing behavior change and to prevent relapses and to investigate what the most cost-effective approach is in this screening population,” they write.

Rochester airport fires up cigars to stoke business

Monday, December 20th, 2010

airport rochesterDavid Damelio, director of the Greater Rochester International Airport, enjoys a good cigar — and has charged thousands of dollars worth of them to the county-run airport in the name of business development.

Financial records for the Monroe County Airport Authority, the agency that oversees the airport, show that the authority footed the bill for $21,746 that Damelio spent on cigars, bars and restaurants catering to cigar smokers, and other tobacco-related products in Rochester and cities around the country since January 2008.

The charges included $16,733 on 120 visits to smoke shops that do not sell food or alcohol that could have run up the tab, and were among more than $120,000 spent on business meetings at local restaurants and bars, and travel for Damelio and other airport personnel, including air fare, meals, hotels, and private car services.

The authority, one of hundreds of quasi-governmental public benefit corporations across the state that have been the subject of numerous reform efforts aimed at increasing accountability, is not subsidized by taxpayers but acts as an arm of county government and its monies are considered public funds.

Underscoring the bond between the authority and Monroe County are that the county executive appoints seven people to the nine-member authority board, the county attorney and finance director serve as secretary and treasurer by statute, and the authority has no employees. All airport workers, including Damelio, are employed by the county. His salary is $102,000.

Damelio, a cigar hobbyist, and most authority board members defended the tobacco charges as justifiable, but administrators at the state agency that monitors public authorities expressed strong reservations about them.

“I think we would question expenses of that nature,” said David Kidera, director of the state Authority Budget Office. “One, there is the (amount) of it. Two, how does buying tobacco products advance the mission and purpose of the Airport Authority? You can argue that there are lots of ways of conducting business meetings that don’t involve buying cigars for yourself and others.”

Authority Chairman James Vazzana said the charges were part of the cost of raising the profile of the airport with airline and travel industry executives.

“I don’t have a problem with it and I don’t think the authority does,” Vazzana said. “If I had reason to believe that money was being spent for his own purposes, and I certainly don’t, then that would be a different situation.”

Where there’s smoke …

The financial records, which included credit card statements, receipts and travel expense logs obtained by the Democrat and Chronicle under an open records request, reveal Damelio frequented smoke shops several times a month and sometimes, while visiting other cities, multiple times in a single day. During one day in New York City in May, Damelio spent $164 at premier tobacconist Barclay-Rex, $110 at OK Cigars, a cigar shop and art gallery in SoHo, and $130 at Florio’s, a Little Italy restaurant and cigar lounge.

On a trip to San Antonio, Texas, in September 2009, records show Damelio dropped $124 at Club Humidor, a tobacconist, before noon and another $136 at the same place barely four hours later.

A month earlier, in August 2009, the airport paid $512 for meetings Damelio attended at three different New York City smoke shops over two days.

In an interview, Damelio acknowledged the charges may appear peculiar to some but said they were essential to airport business — an airport that is smoke-free.

The cigar parlor atmosphere appeals to his guests, Damelio said, adding that his knowledge of cigars enables him to be an effective host. He said he spends upward of $20 per cigar.

None of the receipts were itemized, making it impossible to identify what was purchased. But cigars in the $20 range include classes of Cohibas, Macanudos and La Gloria Cubanas.

“Am I in an environment that is comfortable for me? Absolutely. But I like to show them, ‘Hey, I know this,’ and I can give them a good quality cigar,” Damelio said.

“I want them comfortable, and I want to be the one who knows the most. I’m looking for any upper hand that I can get.”

The purchases are not limited to business trips.

Records show Damelio charged $6,681 on 50 visits to the Havana House, a Penfield tobacco shop with smoking lounge, over the last three years.

Most of the smoke shop stops were recorded in expense reports as the venue for meetings with airline representatives, travel agents for area companies and consultants. But many were not logged, some had no accompanying receipts, and those that were logged provided no specifics on the meeting subject or its attendees.

A typical expense entry, logged in July, listed a $106 charge at Dewey Avenue Smoke Shop in Rochester as “Airline Rep Meeting.”

Damelio explained that he avoids details in his expense logs to protect the privacy of his guests. Under the state’s Freedom of Information Law, the records could be obtained by airline industry insiders looking for an advantage over their competitors.

Asked whether the county would tolerate any other employee expensing tobacco and holding meetings at smoke shops, county spokesman Noah Lebowitz said the locale made little difference.

“If the venue is conducive to holding a productive meeting, and of course within reason is an appropriate venue for a professional conversation, then we would not take issue with the expenditure,” Lebowitz said.

Intensified scrutiny

Public scrutiny of airport directors nationwide has intensified in recent years, following media reports of lavish spending on trips to exotic destinations, pricey hotels and meals.

The former director of Kentucky’s Blue Grass Airport was convicted on criminal theft charges this summer after state auditors tallied $500,000 in questionable expenses incurred by him and other top airport officials, including Broadway tickets, shotguns, video game systems and cigars.

In Indianapolis, the airport director there was recently criticized for spending four of 15 months on the road, visiting cities in England and Malaysia on the airport’s dime.

Just last week it was reported that the director of Little Rock National Airport in Arkansas has reimbursed the airport $3,000 for expenses he had claimed were business related and has publicly apologized for authorizing a $40,000 payment to his son’s school for a football field advertisement promoting the airport’s website.

None of Damelio’s business expenses appear so extravagant or out of place — except for the tobacco.

Records show he takes about 15 business trips a year, mostly to New York City, Boston and Washington, and the bulk of his expenses are for hotels and meals.

But during a two-day junket to Boston and New York City in March 2009, Damelio charged the airport credit card $612 for six visits to four different cigar establishments. One was Cigar Masters in Boston, a lounge that sells beer, wine, cheese and crackers. The others were smoke shops.

He has on many occasions spent hundreds of dollars at pricey restaurants and has charged nearly $5,000 in private car services. Several of the transportation costs lacked receipts.

On the same March 2009 trip, the credit card statements showed charges of $977 at Morton’s of Chicago in Boston, $326 on chauffeurs in Boston, and $411 at a New York City steakhouse.

Records show the Airport Authority has paid for food for holiday and retirement parties — expenditures for which other authorities have been criticized by state auditors — but they were not incurred by Damelio.

The authority typically budgets $50,000 a year for travel and business-related expenses.

By contrast, Albany International Airport budgeted just $15,000 this year, according to a spokesman.

A Syracuse Hancock International Airport spokeswoman said travel expenses last year totaled $10,255, and that airport personnel take up to 15 trips per year, most of them day trips by car. However, the airport also employs a consulting firm that entertains and solicits business from airline and travel executives.

Three officials with Buffalo Niagara International Airport spent $25,090 on travel through the first six months of the current fiscal year, according to that airport. The airport also employs a consultant at up to $100,000 a year.

Board reaction

Authority board members mostly reacted to the tobacco expenditures with indifference. None acknowledged being aware of them, but they did not question their validity or the vagueness of the expense logs. Vazzana, the chairman, remarked that he was struck by how little was spent on cigars over the time period.

Bernard Iacovangelo, chairman of the audit committee, praised Damelio’s public relations skills and said the venue in which he entertains is irrelevant.

“When you’re marketing, you tend to want to take people to a venue that you’re comfortable with, and I don’t think the expenditures are unreasonable,” Iacovangelo said.

Stephen Tucciarello, a Republican Monroe County legislator and board member, said the cigar-related expenses are a small price to pay to network with industry executives.

“If these folks were golfers, they would all be going to a golf course,” Tucciarello said. “It sounds like they’re sitting down to drinks and cigars and if that’s what it takes to spend time with top executives, that’s what he has to do.”

Only one board member expressed doubt about the expenses.

Willie J. Lightfoot, a board member and Democratic Monroe County legislator, called them “absurd.”

“There is no reason to be spending that much in smoke shops. Is he smoking crack?” Lightfoot said.

“As a board member, it definitely raises concerns, and I think the public will feel the same way, too.”

Michael Farrar, deputy director of compliance and enforcement at the state Authority Budget Office, said auditors would likely find the expense logs to be insufficiently detailed and he questioned the public benefit of entertaining at smoke shops.

“If entertaining takes place, you have to ask, ‘What is the result?'” Farrar said. “If it is simply to entertain because that’s what’s done in the private sector and that’s how business is done, that is not a valid reason for a public benefit corporation.”

The authority expends tax dollars for capital projects and benefits from tax-free bonds, but its annual operating budget of about $32 million is derived from airline landing and rental fees, concessions, parking, rental cars and the like.

The results

The authority had employed a consultant at $100,000 a year to promote the airport and secure new routes until 2007. Board members pointed out that those duties have since fallen to Damelio, whose gregarious personality they said fits the public relations mold.

They credited his marketing efforts with keeping fares low, holding enplanements relatively steady, minimizing increases in airline rents and adding airline service in the midst of a recession.

The airport has not welcomed a new airline carrier during Damelio’s tenure, but AirTran last month began offering nonstop flights to Fort Myers, Fla. At the same time, JetBlue this month canceled its direct service to Orlando, citing a lack of interest.

Board members said Damelio’s relationship with American Airlines helped save service by the carrier’s American Eagle branch, which closed operations in Albany, and that his marketing efforts drew the annual New York Aviation Managers Association conference here in September.

That conference, they said, filled 500 hotel rooms, boosted local economic activity, and presented the authority with the opportunity to showcase Rochester and its airport to industry insiders over three days.

Some conference attendees played a round of golf at Brook-Lea Country Club in Gates. Participants in the outing received gift bags courtesy of the authority that included, among other things, cigars bought online for $700.

Rochester airport fires up cigars to stoke business

David Andreatta • Staff writer • December 19, 2010

David Damelio, director of the Greater Rochester International Airport, enjoys a good cigar — and has charged thousands of dollars worth of them to the county-run airport in the name of business development.

Financial records for the Monroe County Airport Authority, the agency that oversees the airport, show that the authority footed the bill for $21,746 that Damelio spent on cigars, bars and restaurants catering to cigar smokers, and other tobacco-related products in Rochester and cities around the country since January 2008.

The charges included $16,733 on 120 visits to smoke shops that do not sell food or alcohol that could have run up the tab, and were among more than $120,000 spent on business meetings at local restaurants and bars, and travel for Damelio and other airport personnel, including air fare, meals, hotels, and private car services.

The authority, one of hundreds of quasi-governmental public benefit corporations across the state that have been the subject of numerous reform efforts aimed at increasing accountability, is not subsidized by taxpayers but acts as an arm of county government and its monies are considered public funds.

Underscoring the bond between the authority and Monroe County are that the county executive appoints seven people to the nine-member authority board, the county attorney and finance director serve as secretary and treasurer by statute, and the authority has no employees. All airport workers, including Damelio, are employed by the county. His salary is $102,000.

Damelio, a cigar hobbyist, and most authority board members defended the tobacco charges as justifiable, but administrators at the state agency that monitors public authorities expressed strong reservations about them.

“I think we would question expenses of that nature,” said David Kidera, director of the state Authority Budget Office. “One, there is the (amount) of it. Two, how does buying tobacco products advance the mission and purpose of the Airport Authority? You can argue that there are lots of ways of conducting business meetings that don’t involve buying cigars for yourself and others.”

(2 of 6)
Authority Chairman James Vazzana said the charges were part of the cost of raising the profile of the airport with airline and travel industry executives.

“I don’t have a problem with it and I don’t think the authority does,” Vazzana said. “If I had reason to believe that money was being spent for his own purposes, and I certainly don’t, then that would be a different situation.”

Where there’s smoke …

The financial records, which included credit card statements, receipts and travel expense logs obtained by the Democrat and Chronicle under an open records request, reveal Damelio frequented smoke shops several times a month and sometimes, while visiting other cities, multiple times in a single day. During one day in New York City in May, Damelio spent $164 at premier tobacconist Barclay-Rex, $110 at OK Cigars, a cigar shop and art gallery in SoHo, and $130 at Florio’s, a Little Italy restaurant and cigar lounge.

On a trip to San Antonio, Texas, in September 2009, records show Damelio dropped $124 at Club Humidor, a tobacconist, before noon and another $136 at the same place barely four hours later.

A month earlier, in August 2009, the airport paid $512 for meetings Damelio attended at three different New York City smoke shops over two days.

In an interview, Damelio acknowledged the charges may appear peculiar to some but said they were essential to airport business — an airport that is smoke-free.

The cigar parlor atmosphere appeals to his guests, Damelio said, adding that his knowledge of cigars enables him to be an effective host. He said he spends upward of $20 per cigar.

None of the receipts were itemized, making it impossible to identify what was purchased. But cigars in the $20 range include classes of Cohibas, Macanudos and La Gloria Cubanas.

“Am I in an environment that is comfortable for me? Absolutely. But I like to show them, ‘Hey, I know this,’ and I can give them a good quality cigar,” Damelio said.

“I want them comfortable, and I want to be the one who knows the most. I’m looking for any upper hand that I can get.”

(3 of 6)
The purchases are not limited to business trips.

Records show Damelio charged $6,681 on 50 visits to the Havana House, a Penfield tobacco shop with smoking lounge, over the last three years.

Most of the smoke shop stops were recorded in expense reports as the venue for meetings with airline representatives, travel agents for area companies and consultants. But many were not logged, some had no accompanying receipts, and those that were logged provided no specifics on the meeting subject or its attendees.

A typical expense entry, logged in July, listed a $106 charge at Dewey Avenue Smoke Shop in Rochester as “Airline Rep Meeting.”

Damelio explained that he avoids details in his expense logs to protect the privacy of his guests. Under the state’s Freedom of Information Law, the records could be obtained by airline industry insiders looking for an advantage over their competitors.

Asked whether the county would tolerate any other employee expensing tobacco and holding meetings at smoke shops, county spokesman Noah Lebowitz said the locale made little difference.

“If the venue is conducive to holding a productive meeting, and of course within reason is an appropriate venue for a professional conversation, then we would not take issue with the expenditure,” Lebowitz said.

Intensified scrutiny

Public scrutiny of airport directors nationwide has intensified in recent years, following media reports of lavish spending on trips to exotic destinations, pricey hotels and meals.

The former director of Kentucky’s Blue Grass Airport was convicted on criminal theft charges this summer after state auditors tallied $500,000 in questionable expenses incurred by him and other top airport officials, including Broadway tickets, shotguns, video game systems and cigars.

In Indianapolis, the airport director there was recently criticized for spending four of 15 months on the road, visiting cities in England and Malaysia on the airport’s dime.

Just last week it was reported that the director of Little Rock National Airport in Arkansas has reimbursed the airport $3,000 for expenses he had claimed were business related and has publicly apologized for authorizing a $40,000 payment to his son’s school for a football field advertisement promoting the airport’s website.

(4 of 6)
None of Damelio’s business expenses appear so extravagant or out of place — except for the tobacco.

Records show he takes about 15 business trips a year, mostly to New York City, Boston and Washington, and the bulk of his expenses are for hotels and meals.

But during a two-day junket to Boston and New York City in March 2009, Damelio charged the airport credit card $612 for six visits to four different cigar establishments. One was Cigar Masters in Boston, a lounge that sells beer, wine, cheese and crackers. The others were smoke shops.

He has on many occasions spent hundreds of dollars at pricey restaurants and has charged nearly $5,000 in private car services. Several of the transportation costs lacked receipts.

On the same March 2009 trip, the credit card statements showed charges of $977 at Morton’s of Chicago in Boston, $326 on chauffeurs in Boston, and $411 at a New York City steakhouse.

Records show the Airport Authority has paid for food for holiday and retirement parties — expenditures for which other authorities have been criticized by state auditors — but they were not incurred by Damelio.

The authority typically budgets $50,000 a year for travel and business-related expenses.

By contrast, Albany International Airport budgeted just $15,000 this year, according to a spokesman.

A Syracuse Hancock International Airport spokeswoman said travel expenses last year totaled $10,255, and that airport personnel take up to 15 trips per year, most of them day trips by car. However, the airport also employs a consulting firm that entertains and solicits business from airline and travel executives.

Three officials with Buffalo Niagara International Airport spent $25,090 on travel through the first six months of the current fiscal year, according to that airport. The airport also employs a consultant at up to $100,000 a year.

Board reaction

Authority board members mostly reacted to the tobacco expenditures with indifference. None acknowledged being aware of them, but they did not question their validity or the vagueness of the expense logs. Vazzana, the chairman, remarked that he was struck by how little was spent on cigars over the time period.

(5 of 6)
Bernard Iacovangelo, chairman of the audit committee, praised Damelio’s public relations skills and said the venue in which he entertains is irrelevant.

“When you’re marketing, you tend to want to take people to a venue that you’re comfortable with, and I don’t think the expenditures are unreasonable,” Iacovangelo said.

Stephen Tucciarello, a Republican Monroe County legislator and board member, said the cigar-related expenses are a small price to pay to network with industry executives.

“If these folks were golfers, they would all be going to a golf course,” Tucciarello said. “It sounds like they’re sitting down to drinks and cigars and if that’s what it takes to spend time with top executives, that’s what he has to do.”

Only one board member expressed doubt about the expenses.

Willie J. Lightfoot, a board member and Democratic Monroe County legislator, called them “absurd.”

“There is no reason to be spending that much in smoke shops. Is he smoking crack?” Lightfoot said.

“As a board member, it definitely raises concerns, and I think the public will feel the same way, too.”

Michael Farrar, deputy director of compliance and enforcement at the state Authority Budget Office, said auditors would likely find the expense logs to be insufficiently detailed and he questioned the public benefit of entertaining at smoke shops.

“If entertaining takes place, you have to ask, ‘What is the result?'” Farrar said. “If it is simply to entertain because that’s what’s done in the private sector and that’s how business is done, that is not a valid reason for a public benefit corporation.”

The authority expends tax dollars for capital projects and benefits from tax-free bonds, but its annual operating budget of about $32 million is derived from airline landing and rental fees, concessions, parking, rental cars and the like.

The results

The authority had employed a consultant at $100,000 a year to promote the airport and secure new routes until 2007. Board members pointed out that those duties have since fallen to Damelio, whose gregarious personality they said fits the public relations mold.

(6 of 6)
They credited his marketing efforts with keeping fares low, holding enplanements relatively steady, minimizing increases in airline rents and adding airline service in the midst of a recession.

The airport has not welcomed a new airline carrier during Damelio’s tenure, but AirTran last month began offering nonstop flights to Fort Myers, Fla. At the same time, JetBlue this month canceled its direct service to Orlando, citing a lack of interest.

Board members said Damelio’s relationship with American Airlines helped save service by the carrier’s American Eagle branch, which closed operations in Albany, and that his marketing efforts drew the annual New York Aviation Managers Association conference here in September.

That conference, they said, filled 500 hotel rooms, boosted local economic activity, and presented the authority with the opportunity to showcase Rochester and its airport to industry insiders over three days.

Some conference attendees played a round of golf at Brook-Lea Country Club in Gates. Participants in the outing received gift bags courtesy of the authority that included, among other things, cigars bought online for $700.

DANDREAT@DemocratandChronicle.com

DemocratandChronicle.com, your source for Rochester, N.Y. news.

Spain Raises Tax On Cigarettes

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Tobacco cigarettes tax hikesThe tax on cigarettes will nearly quadruple, and the tax on cigars, pipe tobacco and snuff will a little more than double. Palace not keen on higher taxes on cigarettes – Spain has raised its cigarette tax, cut wind power subsidies and brought. said after the weekly cabinet meeting on Friday that the increased tobacco tax would raise an extra 780m a year assuming constant consumption.

A separate government. Cigarette tax supporters saw the passage as the end of a more than 10-year journey to raise the levy on cigarettes. The tax is expected to raise 125 million in new revenue, which is supposed to be dedicated to health care for the poor in South Carolina.. Kansas City Star Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Spain has raised its cigarette tax, cut wind power subsidies and brought forward pension reform in the latest measures to reduce the budget deficit and convince financial. Book Bytes – 12: It’s Income Tax Time for Americans: And Time. Tobacco world news: Spain plans tobacco tax hike to cut deficit-source Wall Street Greek: Greek Public Sector Corruption and Tax Evasion Lowering income taxes while raising pollution taxes reaps. Lowering Income Taxes While Raising Pollution Taxes Reaps. Snus News Other Tobacco Products: South Carolina.
Spain plans tobacco tax hike to cut deficit-source. Spain’s government is planning to raise tobacco taxes, a government source said on Friday, as it fights to cut its high budget deficit and calm investor concerns that it could need a. If you’re looking for a true stinker of a campaign slogan, you couldn’t do much better than “Vote for me, I’ll raise your taxes. to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, could be a winner both for public health and for cash-strapped states at least if all the tax burden fell on cigarette sales..

MANILA, PhilippinesMalacaang appears cool to suggestions to raise the tax on cigarettes. Hopefully, this has nothing to do with the fact that the There is a point at which if a state raise taxes on an item significantly higher than neighboring states, the state will actually experience declining tax revenue from the item taxed, as black market entrepreneurs will start operating and smuggle. A few years ago the Canadian government slapped an enormous taxincrease on cigarettes and created surprise a nice new business opportunity running smokes across the St. Lawrence from the Mohawk reservations in New York.. As economic decisionmakerswhether consumers, corporate planners, government policymakers, or investment bankerswe all depend on the market for guidance. In order for markets to work and economic actors to make sound decisions, the. Cigarettes sold in new york Groshan Fabiola Articles Greece End Gameapos Veers Toward Potential Debt Restructuring: Euro Credit – Bloomberg 3 Dec 2010, By staffDecember 3, 2010: 9:44 AM ET NEW YORK Spain raises tax on cigarettes. Financial Times Corp., sold 1.325 billion of bonds, most used cigarette making machines and exchangeable notes in a. Editorial Roundup: Excerpts From Recent Editorials – Tacoma News Tribune Spain Raises Tax, Sets Pension Deadline Amid Contagion – BusinessWeek Snus News Other Tobacco Products: Japan – new government. The highlight was on Ireland budget cuts, SP two-notch downgrade, and the Spain. tobacco taxes. Consumer prices excluding fresh food fell 0.6 percent from a year earlier. The governments October 1 tax increase, which boosted the cost of cigarettes.

Spain raises tax on cigarettes – Financial Times House votes to raise tax on cigarettes 1 per pack This not only justifies raising taxes on cigarettes, which claim 4.9 million lives per year worldwide more than all other air pollutants combined, but it also provides guidelines for how much to raise them. In 2002, 21 U.S. states raised cigarette taxes.. Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Business. Despite the Irish bailout, European debt markets continued to sell off hard in the other PIIGS countries Portugal, Italy, and Spain. Benchmark 10-year borrowing costs jumped 144 basis points to 5.42 percent in Spain,. The chairmen of President Obama’s debt-reduction commission have been unable to win support from any of the panel’s elected officials for their proposed spending cuts and tax increases, underscoring the reluctance of both parties to risk short-term. Cigarette sales in the European Union fell 5.5 percent in the first nine months of 2010, mainly due to declines in Greece, Poland and Spain, Philip Morris International said. The company blamed tax rises, some imposed as part of austerity measures. Economic crisis feeds Portuguese “saudade” -. for levels below 2000 EUR, frozen the retirement age for men and women were equalized and brought on average from 61 to 65 the value added tax VAT was increased taxes were raised on alcohol, cigarettes and fuel.. Weekdly Money Market Review: Market focus shifts to debt woes in Europe – Peninsula Wealth and Health From a 1 Cigarette Tax TIME Healthland Updates with details on tax increase in ninth paragraph, airports in 10th. Dec. 3 Bloomberg — Spains Cabinet raised tax on tobacco. The Cabinet passed an increase in the tax, which will raise 780 million euros 1 billion, and pledged to send a.

Greek End Game Veers to Debt Restructuring Risk: Euro Credit – BusinessWeek But the company offset the sales decline by raising prices on some of its top-tier brands, such as Mild Seven, by 10 yen per pack.. This type of tax hike is not common — if the government doubled the taxes on cigarettes, it appears that cigarette volumes would decline by. The Big Apple Black Market Blows a Big Hole in a New York Tax. Deficit Commission Fiddles While Rome and Dublin and Athens. The highlight was on Ireland budget cuts, SP two-notch downgrade, and the Spain/Portugal debt status. and German-led pressure to raise Irish corporation tax, which at 12.5 is viewed in some EU countries as undermining fair competition. Higher sales, cigarette and alcohol taxes were introduced to boost receipts. sector wages and pensions, and raise taxes after a surge in bond yields shut them out of the capital market. The Greek government has so far received 29 billion euros of funds. Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Us news, daily news Spain OKs new austerity measures to calm markets AP RifaMedia. The new moves include plans to sell off a 30 percent stake in the government-owned national lottery, partial privatization of airports, the elimination of a key jobless benefit and tax cuts for small businesses. Spanish media reported that the administration of Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who canceled a trip to an Iberoamerican summit in Argentina to see the reforms through, may also boost taxes on cigarettes during a final announcement detailing the. Greenback gains across the board on eurozone debt woes, Korean tension – Arab Times

The tax on cigarettes will nearly quadruple, and the tax on cigars, pipe tobacco and snuff will a little more than double. Palace not keen on higher taxes on cigarettes – Spain has raised its cigarette tax, cut wind power subsidies and brought. said after the weekly cabinet meeting on Friday that the increased tobacco tax would raise an extra 780m a year assuming constant consumption. A separate government. Cigarette tax supporters saw the passage as the end of a more than 10-year journey to raise the levy on cigarettes. The tax is expected to raise 125 million in new revenue, which is supposed to be dedicated to health care for the poor in South Carolina.. Kansas City Star Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Spain has raised its cigarette tax, cut wind power subsidies and brought forward pension reform in the latest measures to reduce the budget deficit and convince financial. Book Bytes – 12: It’s Income Tax Time for Americans: And Time. Tobacco world news: Spain plans tobacco tax hike to cut deficit-source Wall Street Greek: Greek Public Sector Corruption and Tax Evasion Lowering income taxes while raising pollution taxes reaps. Lowering Income Taxes While Raising Pollution Taxes Reaps. Snus News Other Tobacco Products: South Carolina. Spain plans tobacco tax hike to cut deficit-source. Spain’s government is planning to raise tobacco taxes, a government source said on Friday, as it fights to cut its high budget deficit and calm investor concerns that it could need a. If you’re looking for a true stinker of a campaign slogan, you couldn’t do much better than “Vote for me, I’ll raise your taxes. to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, could be a winner both for public health and for cash-strapped states at least if all the tax burden fell on cigarette sales..

MANILA, PhilippinesMalacaang appears cool to suggestions to raise the tax on cigarettes. Hopefully, this has nothing to do with the fact that the There is a point at which if a state raise taxes on an item significantly higher than neighboring states, the state will actually experience declining tax revenue from the item taxed, as black market entrepreneurs will start operating and smuggle. A few years ago the Canadian government slapped an enormous taxincrease on cigarettes and created surprise a nice new business opportunity running smokes across the St. Lawrence from the Mohawk reservations in New York.. As economic decisionmakerswhether consumers, corporate planners, government policymakers, or investment bankerswe all depend on the market for guidance. In order for markets to work and economic actors to make sound decisions, the. Cigarettes sold in new york Groshan Fabiola Articles Greece End Gameapos Veers Toward Potential Debt Restructuring: Euro Credit – Bloomberg 3 Dec 2010, By staffDecember 3, 2010: 9:44 AM ET NEW YORK Spain raises tax on cigarettes. Financial Times Corp., sold 1.325 billion of bonds, most used cigarette making machines and exchangeable notes in a. Editorial Roundup: Excerpts From Recent Editorials – Tacoma News Tribune Spain Raises Tax, Sets Pension Deadline Amid Contagion – BusinessWeek Snus News Other Tobacco Products: Japan – new government. The highlight was on Ireland budget cuts, SP two-notch downgrade, and the Spain. tobacco taxes. Consumer prices excluding fresh food fell 0.6 percent from a year earlier. The governments October 1 tax increase, which boosted the cost of cigarettes.

Spain raises tax on cigarettes – Financial Times House votes to raise tax on cigarettes 1 per pack This not only justifies raising taxes on cigarettes, which claim 4.9 million lives per year worldwide more than all other air pollutants combined, but it also provides guidelines for how much to raise them. In 2002, 21 U.S. states raised cigarette taxes.. Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Business. Despite the Irish bailout, European debt markets continued to sell off hard in the other PIIGS countries Portugal, Italy, and Spain. Benchmark 10-year borrowing costs jumped 144 basis points to 5.42 percent in Spain,. The chairmen of President Obama’s debt-reduction commission have been unable to win support from any of the panel’s elected officials for their proposed spending cuts and tax increases, underscoring the reluctance of both parties to risk short-term. Cigarette sales in the European Union fell 5.5 percent in the first nine months of 2010, mainly due to declines in Greece, Poland and Spain, Philip Morris International said. The company blamed tax rises, some imposed as part of austerity measures. Economic crisis feeds Portuguese “saudade” -. for levels below 2000 EUR, frozen the retirement age for men and women were equalized and brought on average from 61 to 65 the value added tax VAT was increased taxes were raised on alcohol, cigarettes and fuel.. Weekdly Money Market Review: Market focus shifts to debt woes in Europe – Peninsula Wealth and Health From a 1 Cigarette Tax TIME Healthland Updates with details on tax increase in ninth paragraph, airports in 10th. Dec. 3 Bloomberg — Spains Cabinet raised tax on tobacco. The Cabinet passed an increase in the tax, which will raise 780 million euros 1 billion, and pledged to send a.

Greek End Game Veers to Debt Restructuring Risk: Euro Credit – BusinessWeek But the company offset the sales decline by raising prices on some of its top-tier brands, such as Mild Seven, by 10 yen per pack.. This type of tax hike is not common — if the government doubled the taxes on cigarettes, it appears that cigarette volumes would decline by. The Big Apple Black Market Blows a Big Hole in a New York Tax. Deficit Commission Fiddles While Rome and Dublin and Athens. The highlight was on Ireland budget cuts, SP two-notch downgrade, and the Spain/Portugal debt status. and German-led pressure to raise Irish corporation tax, which at 12.5 is viewed in some EU countries as undermining fair competition. Higher sales, cigarette and alcohol taxes were introduced to boost receipts. sector wages and pensions, and raise taxes after a surge in bond yields shut them out of the capital market. The Greek government has so far received 29 billion euros of funds. Spain raises tax on cigarettes Financial Times Us news, daily news Spain OKs new austerity measures to calm markets AP RifaMedia. The new moves include plans to sell off a 30 percent stake in the government-owned national lottery, partial privatization of airports, the elimination of a key jobless benefit and tax cuts for small businesses. Spanish media reported that the administration of Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, who canceled a trip to an Iberoamerican summit in Argentina to see the reforms through, may also boost taxes on cigarettes during a final announcement detailing the. Greenback gains across the board on eurozone debt woes, Korean tension – Arab Times