Abilene, TX Smoking Restrictions Ordinance

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Abilene, TX, US

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Type: Ordinance

Status: Adopted on 12/21/06

Source File: http://www.abilenetx.com/

Text:

AN ORDINANCE AMENDING CHAPTER 10 OF THE CODE OF THE CITY OF ABILENE BY ADOPTING A COMPREHENSIVE REVISION OF CHAPTER 10: FIRE PROTECTION AND PREVENTION, ARTICLE III: FIRE PREVENTION CODE, DIVISION 2: SMOKING

WHEREAS, the U. S. Surgeon General recently released a report focusing on the effects of secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke is composed of sidestream smoke (the smoke released from the burning end of a cigarette) and exhaled mainstream smoke (the smoke exhaled by the smoker). Secondhand smoke has been designated as a known human carcinogen by the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Toxicology Program, and the International Agency for Research on Cancer, and an occupational carcinogen by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health; and,

WHEREAS, the findings of said report state there is no risk-free level of exposure to secondhand smoke and that breathing even a little secondhand smoke can be harmful to your health; and,

WHEREAS, the U. S. Surgeon General has concluded that secondhand smoke causes lung cancer, heart disease, acute respiratory effects and can cause sudden infant death syndrome and other health consequences in infants and children; and,

WHEREAS, Tobacco use is the single largest cause of preventable death in Texas, each year killing more Texans than alcohol, AIDS, heroin, auto accidents, suicides, handguns, murders and fires combined (20% of all deaths in Texas); and,

WHEREAS, the simple separation of smokers from nonsmokers within the same airspace does not eliminate the exposure of nonsmokers to secondhand smoke, given that no safe level of exposure to carcinogens has been found; and,

WHEREAS, accordingly, the City Council recognizes that secondhand smoke poses a serious public health hazard, that nonsmokers need protection from secondhand smoke exposure and that therefore, regulation by the City Council of the burning of tobacco in public places and places of employment is imperative in order to protect the public health and welfare of the citizens of the City of Abilene; and,

WHEREAS, on November 7, 2006, the City of Abilene held an election to determine whether or not the voters supported the Council adopting an ordinance banning smoking in all public places and places of employment; and,

WHEREAS, the proposition passed 15,326 (68.62%) in favor of the ban to 7,007 (31.38%) against.

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF ABILENE, TEXAS

Part 1: That Chapter 10, Article III, Division 2, SMOKING of the Code of the City of Abilene be amended in its entirety and is superseded by the new Chapter 10, Article III, Division 2, SMOKING RESTRICTIONS, as set forth in Exhibit A attached hereto.

Part 2: That any person, firm, or corporation violating any of the provisions of this ordinance shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine as set forth in Section 1-9 of the Code of the City of Abilene. Said ordinance, being a penal ordinance, becomes effective ten (10) days after its publication in the newspaper as provided by Section 19 of the Charter of the City of Abilene, Texas.

Refer to the source file to view Attachment A.

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