N.C. House panel approves ban on smoking in public

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 1, 2009

RALEIGH. (AP) ó A panel of North Carolina lawmakers has approved a measure banning smoking in bars, workplaces and other public locations after deciding police officers should issue citations to smokers who refuse to stub out their butts.
The measure approved by a House judiciary committee on Tuesday had initially said only a local health department official could cite smokers who ignore a request to put out a cigarette. The infraction includes a fine of up to $50.
The proprosal still says local health officials are the only people authorized to cite bars, restaurants or other employers who condone indoor smoking. Fine for that offense could reach $200.
The committee also decided against giving municipalities the option to make smoking in public places a misdemeanor.
The legislation now heads to the full House.