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News Summary

New faces in Legislature may not change opinion on smoking ban for all public places

Publication Date: 3/16/2009
  • Author:Kyla King
  • Publication:The Grand Rapids Press

A proposed smoking ban in all public places, including restaurants and bars, will be back before lawmakers this week and has mixed support from West Michigan representatives.

After being snuffed out in December's lame duck legislative session, the issue is set to be considered again Wednesday by a state House committee.

Supporters are hoping the addition of 44 new House members will make a difference in getting the legislation passed...

Last year, the Democrat-controlled House passed a smoking ban that exempted Detroit casinos, cigar and smoke shops, and veterans' organization. But the Republican-led Senate passed a ban with no exceptions.

Detroit casino operations have said they need the ban to be able to compete with Indian casinos that allow smoking. Specialty tobacco shops and cigar bars say the ban would put them out of business.

Schmdit said he would not support a bill that offered exemptions for Detroit casinos.