N.Y. smoking ban study released
New York, NY, May. 2 (UPI) -- A study from a state agency suggests New York City's ban on smoking in bars and restaurants hasn't had the predicted dire financial effect.
The New York Department of Taxation and Finance report, obtained by the New York Post, said business dropped off at New York City's taverns for the first six months of the ban, put in place by Mayor Michael Bloomberg in March 2003. But after that, business has steadily been increasing, the Post reported.
The study said sales tax revenue from bars dropped 5.9 percent and 7.8 percent in the two quarters immediately following the smoking ban, but since September 2003 has grown while similar revenues from other parts of New York state have remained flat.
However, Scott Wexler, executive director of the Empire state restaurant and Tavern Association, claims the ban has hurt business and increased tax revenues come from a quarter percent increase in the sales tax and higher prices charged by establishment owners to cover the loss of business, the Post said.