Protect Local Control

Ensuring Community Rights
To Pass Smokefree Ordinances

News Summary

Legislators undercut Home Rule, worker safety

Publication Date: 2007-05-02
  • Publication:Charleston City Paper

The South Carolina General Assembly has always been an arrogant lot. Before the 1960s, they did not even pretend to be democratically elected. Today they do pretend, but it's a shabby charade.

To wit: The House and Senate bills that would run roughshod over Home Rule and overturn nine local smoke-free ordinances which were passed in the last year by Greenville, Columbia, Charleston, Beaufort County, and other municipalities.

The ordinances were designed to protect workers by making workplaces smoke-free. They were spurred in part by a June 2006 U.S. Surgeon General's report that found even the most sophisticated ventilation systems cannot eliminate secondhand smoke from the air. There is no safe level of secondhand smoke, the Surgeon General said.