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News Summary

Senate panel expected to approve smoking ban Wednesday

Publication Date: 2/19/2012
  • Author:Dan Carden
  • Publication:nwitimes.com

State Rep. Charlie Brown, D-Gary, is likely just days away from getting something he's sought for half a decade -- an Indiana Senate vote on an indoor smoking ban.

Brown said he has been assured by state Sen. Ron Alting, R-Lafayette, chairman of the Senate Public Policy Committee, that the committee will approve House Bill 1149 on Wednesday and send the smoking ban to the Republican-controlled chamber.

"It will get out of committee," Brown said. "It may not get out in its current form, but it will get out of committee."

The legislation, approved last month by the Republican-controlled House, bans smoking in all indoor public spaces except casinos; cigar and hookah bars; fraternal, social and veterans clubs if membership agrees; tobacco shops; and cigar manufacturers.

Bars and taverns would get 18 months to go smoke-free under the proposal.

Alting reportedly is considering changes to the exemption for private clubs, and other committee members may seek additional exemptions for facilities such as nursing and veterans homes...