House Bill 173 would ban indoor smoking in businesses and other places of employment and some public places. Private residences would be exempted unless used for child care or adult day care. Smoking would still be allowed in “designated nonenclosed areas,” according to the Kentucky Legislative Research Council.
Ashli Watts with the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce spoke in favor of the bill, saying the Chamber has supported it for many years. “The public support is outstanding, as it the business support, now it is time for the legislature to reflect this support,” she said. “We are very optimistic that with the public support it will successfully pass this session. Cities that have passed smoke free ordinances have seen nothing but a positive impact on their economy.”
Yet the issue remains a contentious one. District One State Senator Stan Humphries (R), whose area includes Trigg County, acknowledges that smoking is an unhealthy habit. Yet he makes a distinction between banning indoor smoking in public facilities like government buildings, schools and hospitals, and banning it in private businesses.
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