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Woodford County Considering Smoking Ban

VERSAILLES, KY -- Woodford County officials are considering a smoking ban in a county that was once among the top five producers of burley tobacco in the state, reports the Lexington Herald-Leader.

Smokers in Woodford would have fewer places to light up if a proposed ban passes later this year.

The regulation would prohibit smoking in all enclosed public places and places of employment, including restaurants and bars. The Woodford County Board of Health plans to seek the regulation, reports the Herald-Leader.

"It's just the right thing to do, and the board is behind it," said Garland VanZant, director of the Woodford County Health Department.

The 12-member board has not adopted anything, and won't until it has sought public comment about a draft regulation, VanZant said.

"We wanted to put something out for people to look at," VanZant said. "Nothing is set in stone at this time."

The board will present a draft regulation for public comment from 6 to 8 p.m. Feb. 5 at Falling Springs Arts and Recreation Center in Versailles, reports the Herald-Leader.

The proposed ban would prohibit smoking in "all enclosed facilities within places of employment," including but not limited to auditoriums, classrooms, conference and meeting rooms, private offices, elevators, hallways, medical facilities, cafeterias, employee lounges, stairs and restrooms, writes the newspaper.

Private homes would not be regulated, except when used as a licensed child or adult day care. Hotels and motels would be allowed to designate 20 percent of their rooms for smoking. The regulation doesn't specifically address bed and breakfasts or "tourist homes" such as the Woodford County castle on U.S. 60. The castle is expected to open for out-of-town guests and fund-raisers later this year.

But the proposal does prohibit smoking in all outdoor arenas, stadiums and amphitheaters. It does not address outdoor decks and patios of restaurants and bars, reports the Herald-Leader.

However, the proposed ban would prohibit outdoor smoking within 25 feet of outside entrances or open windows.

The proposed regulation is virtually a carbon copy of one adopted last year by the Madison County Board of Health. When that one went into effect in June, Madison County become the 13th community in the state to impose tougher restrictions on smoking since Lexington began enforcing its ban in 2003, writes the newspaper.

Copyright: The Lexington Herald-Leader

http://www.kentucky.com/211/story/283999.html


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