Wednesday, July 25, 2007

State Sen. Gary Cates (West Chester) Wants a Smoking Ban Exemption for Cigar Bars

State Senator Gary Cates of West Chester has SB No. 195 on the table asking for an exemption to the smoking ban to "allow smoking in cigar bars and in outdoor seating areas of restaurants that are at least 20 feet away from an entrance, exit, or window of the restaurant."

It looks to be a rather reasonable compromise. The Cincinnati Enquirer had an article about Anthony's Cigar Bar and how this legislation might save that business from going under.

WCPO calls the exemption "unlikely" in the headline, but offers no evidence in the actual article. The piece ends with this:
Both Cates as well as Varacalli say they receive plenty of positive feedback on their attempt for an exemption.

They claim it comes from both smokers and non-smokers alike.

Some people feel the issue goes beyond smoking, to an issue of civil liberties, especially at an establishment which patrons know features tobacco, even before they walk through the doors.
While I am not a smoker, I do view this ban as a violation of your right to choose how to live your life. The nanny-state has plenty of adherents though, and it will be interesting to see how this legislation fares. At least we'll get a real debate...

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