House Passes Smoking Ban, 62-34
(Indianapolis, Ind.) – Indiana’s House of Representatives has passed a bill to make Indiana a smokefree state.
House Bill 1149 passed Tuesday on a 62-34 vote. It’s the sixth consecutive year the House has passed a public workplace smoking ban, only to die every other year in the Senate.
This year could be different, though, as Senate leaders and Governor Mitch Daniels have voiced support for the ban.
The legislation states there would be no smoking allowed in indoor public places, enclosed areas of workplaces, or within 12 feet of an entrance to a public place.
“We have Hoosiers trying to find the best job they can and in many cases, those jobs are unfortunately in smoke filled environments, exposing them to dangerous and harmful effects of secondhand smoke. Hoosiers should not have to choose between providing for their families and their own health,” said Rep. Eric Turner (R-Cicero), the bill’s author.
The House bill does include exemptions for casinos, cigar bars, private clubs, and fraternal organizations. Bars would be given 18 months to comply if the bill becomes law.
Anti-smoking advocates lauded the House passage.
“We’re proud of Reps. Eric Turner and Charlie Brown for authoring a smokefree bill that made it through the House with very few exemptions. We encourage the Senate to carry this momentum forward,” the Indiana Campaign for Smokefree Air said in a statement Tuesday.
HB 1149 now heads to the Senate. It could receive a committee hearing as soon as next week.