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Archive for Thursday, September 2, 2010

Fairness issue

Private businesses have a right to be peeved that the state has exempted its own casinos from a statewide smoking ban.

September 2, 2010

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A Wichita judge was right on target with both his ruling and his comments concerning an effort to exempt that city from the statewide smoking ban that went into effect July 1.

On Tuesday, Sedgwick County District Judge Jeff Goering lifted a restraining order that had prevented the state law from being enforced in Wichita. Plaintiffs in the case contended that Wichita’s smoking regulations — which allowed smoking in businesses that prohibit minors or establish ventilated smoking rooms — actually were more restrictive that the state law that bans smoking in most public places.

In his ruling, however, Goering declared, “There is no question (the state’s law) is the more stringent.” Although the Wichita case still could proceed to trial, there seems to be little point in pursuing the issue given the judge’s ruling. The ruling also makes it less likely that opponents in other Kansas cities will challenge the statewide ban.

Although Goering defended the statewide smoking ban, he didn’t miss the opportunity to chide state legislators for exempting state-owned casinos from the ban. The plaintiffs, he wrote, “are justifiably upset that they are being forced to make an economic sacrifice in the name of health that the State of Kansas is unwilling to impose on casinos.”

There is, of course, some question about how great that “economic sacrifice” may be. Establishments in Lawrence continue to be busy despite — or perhaps, partially because of — a smoking ban that is more stringent than the state law and took effect several years earlier. Nonetheless, whatever that economic impact is, Wichita business owners who are protesting the law have a right to expect state-owned casinos to bear the same burden they do.

The agreement to exempt casinos from the smoking ban may have been necessary to gain legislative approval for the bill this year, but it’s clearly an issue legislators should revisit. The smoking ban benefits the health and comfort of Kansans, and extending it to state-owned casinos is only fair.

Comments

kansasmutt 4 years, 3 months ago

Force the law on the state. You force it on us and destroy our business, now destroy your own. Hipochrite bastards .Freedom would allow for CHOICE not force and law. Those who work in the state owned casinos should sue the state for BILLIONS for being concidered low class citizens.

mom_of_three 4 years, 3 months ago

"smoking ban benefits the health of Kansas?" Sure it does, but why stop there? Why not ban alcohol in college cities or ban alcohol altogether? Why not ban other things, such as pollution in cities? Heck, why not ban anything which can cause an illness?

Why does the state not force the ban in its own casinos? Does it realize something that bar and restaurant owners have been telling them?

gr 4 years, 3 months ago

How about the bar and restaurant owners sell lotto tickets, consider themselves part of state run gambling, and exempt themselves from the law?

BigPrune 4 years, 3 months ago

I heard that a bag of pot costs less than a pack of cigarettes.

Sheila Martin 4 years, 3 months ago

Bar owners do not support banning smoking in casinos. Stop trying to create the illusion that they do. We want State casinos to be successful, as that is supposed to help keep taxes down. The paper, is complicite in the propagandizing of smoking bans as they receive massive amounts of ad revenue from pro ban grant sponges and from nicotine replacement product giant Johnson and Johnson. Your attempt to make enemies and create a conflict that does not exist is in the pro ban handbook. We simply want to share the right to allow smoking or not in our private businesses. If 10% of taverns want to allow smoking, and agree to only serve and hire adults, and 90% want to not allow smoking, it appears that there is room for everyone. But the grant nags MUST shut down small businesses, that they have no intention of ever going in, to fulfill their grant requirements. And the paper must keep printing the nonscience of pro ban to continue receiving their ad revenue. Follow the money!!!

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