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Louisiana lawmakers look to extend ban on smoking in bars

Publication Date: 2009-04-24
  • Author:The Times-Picayune
  • Publication:The Times-Picayune

Smoking in bars would be a thing of the past as of Aug. 15 if two south Louisiana legislators have their way at the lawmaking session that begins Monday.

Rep. Gary Smith, D-Norco, has filed House Bill 844 to ban smoking in "any restaurant or bar." A state law adopted three years ago banned smoking in restaurants, office buildings and other public places but granted exceptions to bars, gambling boats and casinos.

Sen. Rob Marionneaux, D-Livonia, has filed Senate Bill 186 to prohibit smoking "in any restaurant or bar if food is served at any time" and it is open to the public. Marionneaux said that since the smoking ban was imposed on restaurants, some bars have started serving food, blurring the line between bars and restaurants.