Thursday, November 23, 2006

Expensive Bad Grammar

From the news:

Grammar costs cancer research $8 million
NEW YORK, Nov. 21 (UPI) -- Poor grammar has led to cancer researchers in Hawaii losing $8 million in funding from cigarette taxes, as only one cigarette was specified in the law.

Linda Smith, an adviser to Gov. Linda Lingle, told USA Today the law's intent was to give 1.5 cents per cigarette sold to research but the law's final wording means they will get 1.5 cents from the sale of one cigarette.

The most recent failure in proofreading was on Arizona's Nov. 7 ballot, when voters approved a tobacco tax increase of 0.80 cents, when the original intent was an 80-cent surcharge, the newspaper said.

New York state also has enacted a law covering "aggravated driving while intoxicated" that sets the minimum blood alcohol percentage at 0.18, it specified .018 grams.

Lt. Glenn Miner, a New York State Police spokesman told the newspaper the gram measurement is too low to measure, and that the body can produce that amount naturally without drinking anything alcoholic.

All three laws will be amended when the various legislatures reconvene, the report said.

Our question is, why didn't the reporters covering those laws before they were passed write something about the sloppy grammar? C'mon, reporters! We know those meetings are dull. We've covered them ourselves. Next time, pay attention to the actual text of the proposed legislation; you'll no doubt have something more fun to write about.

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