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Decision Virginia Archive 8/08- 7/12

Smoking Ban passes the House of Delegates

with 4 comments

Ryan Nobles – bio | email

Smoking in bars and restaurants is certain to come to an end, after controversial legislation in the General Assembly made it past its most difficult obstacle. Members of the Republican controlled House of Delegates passed the bill today, less than a week after Governor Tim Kaine announced a compromise plan with Speaker William Howell to push his pet project through.

While the bill’s passage was expected, it was anything but certain. The Speaker never guaranteed that he had the votes, and the state’s most prominent Republican, outgoing Attorney General and Gubernatorial candidate Bob McDonnell, signaled that he was not in favor of its passage. The bill ended up passing the House by a comfortable margin of 61-38. 

This new compromise piece of legislation will now have to pass the Senate and then be signed by Governor Kaine before it officially becomes law.  

**UPDATE** The bill apparently still has a few legislative hoops to jump  through before getting to Kaine’s desk. It will be voted on again tomorrow in the House, along with some amendments regarding its implementation. The legislation’s differences also need to be reconciled with the Senate version.

This all appears to be housekeeping work that needs to be done. The big hurdle has been cleared and by this time next year, smoking in most bars and restaurants in Virginia will be a thing of the past.

Written by Ryan Nobles

February 9, 2009 at 10:53 pm

Posted in General Assembly 2009

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4 Responses

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  1. I think that smoking should be banned in restaurants because some restaurants lose customers due to the amount of cigarette smoke. If people want to smoke, they can wait until they get in their car.

    A concerned teen

    February 9, 2009 at 11:51 pm

  2. I know that people love to take our rights as smokers away. When do we get a chance to have the simple rights of being able to smoke. What exactly is wrong with having smoking and non-somking sections? I don’t understand why, me being a smoker allows me to have less rights to be in a place of business than any person who does not smoke. Why is it so easy for me to loose my rights but it is just considered ok.

    Brett Collins

    February 10, 2009 at 10:26 am

  3. I think you need to do some fact checking. The bill was very watered down, and if implemented as it passed, basically just creates smoking and non-smoking sections like we have now.

    check your facts

    February 10, 2009 at 12:12 pm

  4. I am not too concerned about this particular bill, but it is part of a bigger problem. Smokers are unfairly targeted as scapegoats in many cases; such as taxing. Claiming they will raise the tax on tobacco products to help pay for healthcare when historically this money reall tends to go for things we should all be paying for (road improvement and infrastructure). It is cowardly on the part of our politicians to grandstand on morals knowing they are just afraid to tell us that they need to raise taxes and then do so fairly (to everyone). If they wanted to improve health take elevators out of 4 story buildings, eliminate parking close to food courts and add taxes to fast and comfort foods. Obesity is america’s biggest health problem not smoking.

    Brian

    February 11, 2009 at 8:11 pm


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