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News Summary

Blanco signs public smoking ban

Publication Date: 7/1/2006
  • Author:Ed Anderson
  • Publication:New Orleans (LA) Times Picayune

Stand-alone bars, casinos to be exempt from law

Gov. Kathleen Blanco signed into law Friday a statewide ban on smoking in restaurants and other public places, a measure one restaurant industry official said may be challenged in court.

Without fanfare, Blanco signed Senate Bill 742 by Sen. Rob Marionneaux, D-Livonia, outlawing smoking in most public buildings -- but not gambling outlets and free-standing bars. The new law bans smoking in bars attached to restaurants, a major source of opposition to the bill during its journey through the Legislature. It takes effect Jan. 1.

In a prepared statement, Blanco said she signed the bill "as a progressive health care measure that will protect people, especially children, from second-hand smoke in public places. It is time that we focus on keeping our citizens and children healthy and encourage wellness."