statewide smoking ban

Lawmakers Considering Extending Smoking Ban To Casinos

Feb 13, 2015
Marco Papale / https://www.flickr.com/photos/marcopapale/

A bill to lift restrictions on riverboat casinos is reopening the debate of whether the state smoking ban should apply to casinos.

New Albany Representative Ed Clere has introduced a bill to remove casinos’ exemption from the smoking ban.

Gary Representative Charlie Brown co-authored the original law.

With the riverboats seeking to move inland, Brown says he may seek to add the smoking restriction to that bill when it reaches the House floor in the next week or two.

Laura Chimera

Legislators will seek to broaden Indiana‘s three-year-old smoking ban in the upcoming legislative session that kicks off today.

The smoke-free law includes two big exceptions, for bars and casinos, which sparked heated debate when it was passed.

A bill House Public Health Chairman Ed Clere, R-New Albany, is authoring leaves intact the exemption for bars but would extend the ban to casinos. He reasons that a server who does not want to inhale smoke on the job can find a comparable job relatively easily, but a dealer at a casino would face a significant pay cut.

Kokomo City Council Rejects Expansion Of Smoking Ban

Sep 9, 2014
Brandon Van Keuren / https://www.flickr.com/photos/in-7hi5-7wi1igh7/

Kokomo‘s city council has rejected a proposal to go smoke-free.

An ordinance to extend Kokomo‘s workplace smoking ban to bars and clubs passed a preliminary vote last month 5-4. But on Monday‘s final vote, Republican Kevin Summers switched from yes to no, joining four of the council‘s six Democrats to defeat the measure.

Governor Mitch Daniels says supporters of a statewide smoking ban accomplished about 90% of their goal. 

Smoking will officially be prohibited in public places when the legislation takes effect July 1.  The ban exempts gaming facilities, cigar and hookah bars, tobacco shops and social clubs that take votes every two years to allow smoking.

Despite opposition from the bill’s authors, it also fully exempts bars and taverns that require patrons be 21 or older to enter.  Some smoking ban advocates say if the ban doesn’t encompass everything then there’s no reason to have it.

A statewide smoking ban is headed to the governor’s desk for his approval. This, after weeks of debate and compromise have left many legislators aren’t satisfied with the results.

The final version of the ban exempts bars and taverns, gaming facilities, tobacco shops and private clubs.  And it does not prevent local governments from passing stricter bans.

Lawmakers are working on a final draft of a statewide smoking ban,  but there are still significant issues to overcome and only a few days of session left.  Let's made some legislators admit it’s possible the ban won’t get passed this year.