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News Summary

Smoking foes to try again for ban

Publication Date: 12/4/2006
  • Author:Herman Wang
  • Publication:Chattanooga (TN) Times & Free Press

One proposal would affect all indoor public places; another would affect all state owned or operated buildings.

After a year when several anti-smoking bills were snuffed out in the Tennessee General Assembly, sponsors and supporters of the legislation say they are optimistic about their chances in the coming session.

"It’s a new day. I do think there’s a new era on the horizon," said Sen.-elect Paul Stanley, R-Germantown, who, as a House member this year, sponsored a bill that would ban smoking in all buildings owned or operated by the state, indoor public places and enclosed areas of employment.

The measure was one of several tobacco-related bills that died in the House Agriculture Committee.

Another, less far-reaching bill that banned smoking only in state-owned or operated buildings passed the Senate but never came up for a vote in the House.

Chastity Mitchell, a lobbyist for Campaign for a Healthy and Responsible Tennessee, a consortium of state health groups, said the political climate is improving for antismoking legislation, particularly as the House Agriculture Committee will have a new chairman with the retirement of Rep. Eugene Davidson, DAdams.