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News Summary

Senate sparking statewide smoking ban debate

Publication Date: 2009-02-10
  • Publication:The Capital-Journal

The full Senate is likely to vote Monday on a proposed statewide smoking ban covering restaurants, bars and places of employment.

Attempts to push similar legislation in Kansas failed the past two years, but Sen. David Wysong, R-Mission Hills, said today the latest measure had a 50 percent chance of gaining enough votes to emerge from the Senate.

"Twenty-six states have done this. Dozens and dozens of countries," he said.

Under the bill, the smoking prohibition would apply to public places; taxicabs and limousines; restrooms, lobbies and other common areas of public and private buildings, condominiums and other multiple-residential facilities; restrooms, lobbies and other common areas of motels and hotels and in at least 80 percent of guest sleeping quarters in a motel or hotel; access points of all buildings; and any place of employment.

Exemptions in the legislation include outdoor areas of any building beyond a 10-foot radius of the doorway; private homes except those used as a day care home; hotel or motel rooms designated for smoking guests; the Kansas Soldiers Home; designated, ventilated and enclosed smoking areas of an adult-care home or long-term care unit; and tobacco shops.