Skip to comments.£10 licence to smoke' proposed
Posted on 02/15/2008 9:09:28 PM PST by Jakarta ex-pat
Smokers could be forced to pay £10 for a permit to buy tobacco if a government health advisory body gets its way.
No one would be able to buy cigarettes without the permit, under the idea proposed by Health England.
Its chairman, Professor Julian Le Grand, told BBC Radio 5 Live the scheme would make a big difference to the number of people giving up smoking.
But smokers' rights group Forest described the idea as "outrageous", given how much tax smokers already pay.
Professor Le Grand, a former adviser to ex-PM Tony Blair, said cash raised by the proposed scheme would go to the NHS.
He said it was the inconvenience of getting a permit - as much as the cost - that would deter people from persisting with the smoking habit.
"You've got to get a form, a complex form - the government's good at complex forms; you have got to get a photograph.
"It's a little bit of a problem to actually do it, so you have got to make a conscious decision every year to opt in to being a smoker."
He added: "70% of smokers actually want to stop smoking.
"So if you just make it that little bit more difficult for them to actually re-start or even to start in the first place, yes I think it will make a big difference."
But Forest said it would be "an extra form of taxation, while tobacco taxation is already at record levels".
Forest spokesman Simon Clark said that when the cost of administration, extra bureaucracy and enforcement are taken into account, "the mind boggles".
He added that the people most affected by the proposals would be "the elderly and people on low incomes".
Mr Clark added: "The senior government advisor putting this idea forward is not only adding to the red tape and bureaucracy we already have in this country.
"He is openly bragging that he wants to make the form as complex as possible to fill in."
A department of health spokeswoman did not rule out such a scheme as part of the next wave of tobacco regulation.
She said: "We will be consulting later this year on the next steps on tobacco control.
"Ministers are seeking input from a whole range of stakeholders."
Grow your own!
Wanna bet? We tried the same thing with alcohol several years back, didn't work out as planned.
If I'm going to go to that much trouble, I won't bother with tobacco... ;-)
Just kidding. I stopped smoking all that stuff many years ago...
I defend smokers' rights today, but as an ex-smoker.
Not only do smokers save socialized medicine a lot of money by dying earlier than non-smokers, the taxes they pay help to subsidize health care for the longer-living non-smoking non-obese.
Creates another niche for the already prosperous black market.
they put up with a nice fee for the priviledge of watching TV.
A black and white TV licence is £45.50.
The licence (whether colour or black and white) is free if you are 75 or over, and half-price if you are registered blind.
so what’s 10quid a year to buy smokes ?
well put...longer lives = $$$$...but from who?
Wow. At least they have the decency to only charge half if you’re blind. I wonder what the fee is for registering as blind.
Rather than a License, why not UP the minimum purchase to a Carton. Then require the buyer to have a State Approved
“offical Re-usable plastic carrier” for that Carton?
You are 100% right. I also am an ex-smoker. If someone was smoking next to me at work I would object as I have no choice but to be in that area. However, outside of work I can choose to go to a bar or restaurant or not. I have absolutely no right to make everyone else not smoke in that bar or restaurant because I do not. I have the choice to go to one that does not allow smoking if I so desire.
signed Ex-Smoker defending those that smoke. (It is a Libertarian thing)
I slipped one time,and brought over a Tv to them....there was holyhell. I had completely forgotten about the tax and the surveillance vans going round.
But with this license scam,haven’t they figured out that groups will get together and purchase one license and send that person out to the shop ? or will they put a daily ration as well ?
.....I’m wondering how much is a pack of any strong full flavour now—20 per pack ? were always expensive.
Yes, it is! (though I'm small-l, not large-L)
I smoked tobacco from about 15 to about age 25, average about a pack a day. Quit more or less cold turkey, successfully. I have an occasional desire (worst is sitting at a bar having a beer and the person next to me lays a pack of Marlboros down between us), but I've only given in a couple of times in the 30 years since I quit, and typically half a cigarette was enough to kill that desire.
I let friends who smoke do it in my house (in the winter, too cold to go outside) or in my car, with windows open. My wife never smoked, and my daughter is deadset against it (she's 14, so that may change, though I hope it doesn't).
I play in a band that plays in clubs and bars, and we saw attendance plummet when the smoking ban went into effect (NY).
I think smoking is a stupid, dangerous, dirty addiction. I'd rather people didn't do it. But that doesn't mean it should be illegal or taxed into oblivion.
Ten quid a year in 2008. Just how may quid a year in 2018? Almost all of the Leftist abominations with a small fee or tax that is increased later. Then those that must pay find out that they have already conceded the right of the Government to collect the money and now they can only argue about how much money it will be. I am sure that this license fee will go up, drastically, in the years to come if smokers are stupid enough to allow this scheme to start.
Who thinks this stuff up?
What if your colour blind? Do you still have to pay the full price?
In practice the TV Licencing authority regards it as optional (watching TV that is, not geting the licence)
TV Licence (continued). I have now received an Official Warning at my flat in London, where I do not have a television licence because I do not have a television. In its fiercest letter so far of the many that it has sent to me, TV Licensing, the body responsible, tells me that ‘Enforcement officers have been authorised by us to visit your address ...to interview you under caution’. The Official Warning ‘strongly’ advises me to buy a licence ‘to avoid a court appearance’. It makes no allowance for the possibility that I do not have a television ..... . Bureaucracies automatically behave badly if empowered to do so
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