D.C. takes the anti-smoking campaign to the sidewalks

These are tough times for D.C. smokers.  Just as the tax on cigarettes is getting bumped up by 50 cents, bringing the total tax per pack up to $2.50, the D.C. Council is putting sidewalk smoking and cheap cigars in the crosshairs.

D.C. Councilmember Phil Mendelson (D—At Large) recently proposed a bill that would allow business owners to ban smoking within 25 feet of the door to their establishment—including sidewalks.  Mendelson’s bill would also make it a crime for anyone under 18 to possess tobacco.

The Council is also considering a ban on cheap cigars, which are often used for less-than-legal purposes. The ban would not apply to the five D.C. stores that sell “high-end” cigars, according to the Washington Post, just stores that sell single cigars for $5 or less.

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