INDIANAPOLIS - Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels put his name to the state€™s smoking ban, ending a long-standing battle over the issue, the Associated Press reports. The Senate almost didn€™t pass the bill earlier this month after more exemptions were added. Exemptions include bars, casinos, private clubs, retail tobacco shops. The law also does not allow municipalities to pass new bans that are stricter than the statewide one
"I never thought this was as quite an absolute subject as some thought it," said Daniels during the signing ceremony. When taverns and bars were placed on the exemption list, public health groups formerly in favor of the ban reversed their approval.
However, most lawmakers felt the resulting bill had enough teeth in it to make it effective. "I like to be focused on the thousands of locations in Indiana on July 1st that will be smoke-free," said Rep. Eric Turner, one of the bill€™s co-writers. "Of course we had to have some exemptions to get it passed. The public will dictate to us when the timing is right."