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News Summary

More Than 2,000 Bills Filed in Okla. for 2007 Legislative Session

Publication Date: 2007-01-22
  • Author:Ron Jenkins
  • Publication:Insurance Journal

Among this year's proposals that appear to be dead on arrival is a bill by Rep. John Auffet, D-Stilwell, that would allow restaurants to become all-smoking establishments again if they chose to do so.

Effective last March, smoking was banned in all cafes and restaurants, except those that build separately enclosed, ventilated rooms. Restaurants were given 30 months to get ready for the ban under legislation in 2003 that prohibited smoking in most other public places.

Auffet said he introduced the smoking bill at the request of a local restaurant owner who objected to the ban. He expressed mixed feelings about his own legislation.

"I'm not real optimistic about it going anywhere,'' he said. "It's just a request bill. I have sympathies both ways.

"I understand the idea that people like to run their own businesses, yet there is part of me that understands the necessity for the prohibition for public health reasons.''