Category Archives: Smoking ban

Governor to sign indoor smoking ban bill on Friday

TOPEKA – Gov. Mark Parkinson on Friday will sign a bill banning indoor smoking in most indoor spaces.

The measure, House Bill 2221 would bar indoor smoking starting July 1, although it does allow smoking on the gaming floors of the state-owned casinos. The measure overrides less comprehensive local smoking bans such as the one in Wichtia.

The governor, a Democrat, has pushed for the smoking ban this year and been a vocal supporter of the measure.

He is scheduled to sign the bill 10 a.m. on Friday. Additional ceremonies are scheduled in Kansas City, Kan. and Salina, the times and locations are listed below.

Kansas City

1:30 p.m., Monday, March 15 School of Nursing Atrium University of Kansas Medical Center 3901 Rainbow Blvd., Kansas City

Salina

3:30 p.m., Monday, March 15 Salina-Saline County Health Department Conference Room A 125 West Elm Street, Salina

UPDATED: House sends full smoking ban to governor

smokingbanTOPEKA – The House voted 68-54 to send a comprehensive statewide smoking ban to the governor’s desk Thursday.

The measure, Senate substitute House Bill 2221, would bar smoking indoors — including at restaurants, bars and other public spacesĀ  — beginning July 1. It would allow smoking in state-owned casinos, private clubs and tobacco shops. It overrides any weaker smoking bans, including Wichita’s partial ban.

The bill now goes to the governor’s desk. It was passed last year by the Senate.

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So what about that smoking ban?

CigaretteIt may be another two months before the City Council emerges with a compromised smoking ban proposal. That’s because City Council members Jeff Longwell and Lavonta Williams are still out and about, meeting with bar and restaurant owners and reviewing what other cities have done. Longwell said it may be 45 to 60 days before a draft ordinance is ready. Despite the council’s apparent gridlock on the issue, Longwell said council members want the same thing. “Everybody wants to eliminate secondhand smoke,” he said. The question, he said, is whether to do that with a mandate or by asking businesses for some voluntary reductions in secondhand smoke or some combination.

Meanwhile, advocates on all sides of the issue have flooded the 30-minute public agenda at council meetings, mostly with repetitious arguments. (People get up to five minutes to speak in front of the council — and whoever is watching on cable Channel 7.) State officials also are considering a statewide ban, although its prospects in the legislative session are uncertain.

The American Lung Association just put out its State of Tobacco Control report and gave Kansas an “F.”