A New Smoking Ban in Tobacco Country
LOUISVILLE, Ky., Nov. 14 (AP) - A smoking ban approved by the City Council in Louisville takes effect on Tuesday, covering thousands of businesses.
Exempt are bars, private clubs, hotel rooms and the Churchill Downs racetrack, among others.
About 300 businesses are claiming exemptions from the ban, including restaurants that want to be classified as bars and those with separately ventilated smoking rooms.
Citations can result in fines against business operators or smokers, ranging from $50 for a first offense up to $500 for multiple offenses.
Louisville joins Lexington and Georgetown as Kentucky cities with smoking bans in a state with deep ties to tobacco. The state has the nation's highest adult smoking rate and is the top producer of burley tobacco, an ingredient in cigarettes.
Louisville once was a hub of the tobacco industry. But in recent years, Philip Morris closed a manufacturing plant here, and Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation abandoned its Louisville headquarters after merging with R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.