Texas - smoke-free legislation falls short..

May 22, 2009 - Smoke-free Texas legislation banning smoking in nearly all workplaces falls short. Senator Rodney Ellis (D-Houston) today, May 19th announced that the effort to pass smoke-free Texas legislation has fallen short in the Texas Senate.

Senate Bill 544 would have eliminated smoking in indoor public places, including municipal worksites and private worksites including restaurants, restaurant bars and stand-alone bars. The legislation would have levied a maximum fine of $100 for owners, managers or operators, but exempted cigar bars and tobacco shops.

The bill was supported by the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, the Texas Restaurant Association and others, was derailed in large measure due to an intense lobbying efforts by tobacco companies. According to the Dallas Morning News, Big Tobacco interests have hired 40 lobbyists and are spending between $1.2 and $2.4 million lobbying against the smoking ban and a new formula for taxing chewing tobacco.

Companion news brief; Texas - tobacco lobbyists - derailing state smoking ban/smokeless tobacco tax change...

Reference: Ellis set to hold "wake" for smoking ban [UPDATED], Texas Politics, 5/19/2009.



May 22, 2009 at 3:34 PM

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The SmokeLess States Program
from To Improve Health and Health Care, Volume VIII Print Print all sections E-mail Share Text size: A A A 2005

By: Gerlach KK and Larkin MA

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This chapter describes SmokeLess States®: National Tobacco Policy Initiative, one of the largest investments made by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, with $99 million authorized in grants since 1992. Primarily, grants were awarded to non-governmental organizations, with the intention that they would educate the public and policy-makers about the tobacco problem. Two features about the program are significant: (1) the Foundation encouraged its grantees to be activists; (2) advocacy was emphasized to bring about policy change. The program relied heavily on three major health voluntary organizations: the American Cancer Society; the American Heart Association and the American Lung Association. They provided financial support and, in particular, funds to help lobbying efforts which the Foundation could not support directly. In addition to insight on the effects of advocacy, this chapter offers a window into the role of coalitions in bringing about social change. The program ended in 2004 and its lasting impact has yet to be determined.
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