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News Summary

Mohegan Sun smoking issue on the agenda for state, tribe

Publication Date: 1/8/2009
  • Author:Brian Hallenbeck
  • Publication:TheDay, CT

Total-ban proposal is up against sovereignty claim

State Attorney General Richard Blumenthal and representatives of the Mohegan Tribe could meet as early as today to discuss the tribe's plan to further restrict smoking and tackle second-hand smoke at Mohegan Sun, a plan the tribe forged during private meetings with Gov. M. Jodi Rell.

Blumenthal, in a telephone interview late Wednesday afternoon, called the tribe's plan to limit smoking to designated gaming areas, install ventilation systems and take other measures "a good first step, certainly in the right direction." But he said he continues to believe that smoking should be totally banned at the state's tribal casinos.

"I've been an outspoken advocate of a ban, a complete ban, in the past...and have said it would be legal and constitutional (for the state to impose it)," Blumenthal said. "If the means to that end is a series of specific steps - a partial ban leading to a complete ban - I could favor it."