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Virginia lawmakers override governor on smoking ban

Publication Date: 2007-04-05
  • Author:Erin Killian
  • Publication:Washington Business Journal

Virginia's General Assembly rejected Gov. Tim Kaine's proposal for a statewide smoking ban in bars and restaurants.

The house voted 59-40 against the ban, which would have made Virginia the 22nd state with such laws...

"I am disappointed that lawmakers chose not to adopt my common-sense efforts to restrict smoking in restaurants," Kaine says in a statement. "The scientific evidence about the bad health effects of secondhand smoke is not in dispute, and my amendment would have protected the health of restaurant employees and patrons."...

The legislation that the General Assembly passed goes back to Kaine. Griffith's bill, without Kaine's amendments, eliminates the requirement that restaurants that allow smoking have separate sections for smokers and nonsmokers.

"I remain concerned that the unamended bill would eliminate the current requirement that all restaurants offer a nonsmoking section," Kaine says, "and I will direct my health commissioner to continue to work with stakeholders on this issue."

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