1997 Regular Session
To: Public Health and Welfare
By: Representative Reeves
House Bill 245
AN ACT TO PROHIBIT SMOKING IN CERTAIN PUBLIC INDOOR AREAS; TO PROVIDE FOR THE DISPLAY OF SIGNS IN AREAS WHERE SMOKING IS PERMITTED THAT DESIGNATE BOTH SMOKING AND NONSMOKING AREAS; TO PROVIDE FOR PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS OF THIS ACT; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "Smoking in Indoor Public Areas Act."
SECTION 2. As used in this act, the following terms shall have the meanings ascribed in this section:
(a) "Smoke" or "smoking" means to inhale, exhale, burn, carry or otherwise possess any lighted cigarette, cigar, pipe or any other object or device of any form that contains lighted tobacco or any other smoking product.
(b) "Government buildings" means buildings or portions of buildings that are owned, leased or operated under the control of the state or any of its political subdivisions, except those buildings or portions of buildings that are leased to other organizations or corporations.
(c) "Health care facilities" means those types of health care facilities defined in Section 41-7-173(h).
SECTION 3. It is unlawful for any person to smoke in the following public indoor areas, except where a smoking area is designated as provided for in this section:
(a) Public and private schools, including preschools and day-care centers, except in enclosed private offices and teacher lounges.
(b) Health care facilities, except where smoking areas are designated in employee break areas. Nothing in this act shall prohibit or preclude a health care facility from being smoke-free.
(c) Government buildings other than health care facilities as provided for in paragraph (b) of this section, except that smoking may be allowed in enclosed private offices and designated areas of employee break areas. Smoking policies in the State Capitol and the Legislative Services Buildings shall be determined by the office or offices of government having control over those buildings.
(e) Public transportation vehicles, except for taxicabs.
(f) Arenas and auditoriums of public theaters or public performing art centers, except that smoking areas may be designated in foyers, lobbies or other common areas. Smoking shall be permitted as part of a legitimate theatrical performance.
(g) Restaurants, except that this prohibition does not prevent (i) the designation of a contiguous area within a restaurant that contains a maximum of fifty percent (50%) of the seating capacity of the restaurant as a smoking area; or (ii) the providing of separate rooms for smokers and nonsmokers so long as the rooms designated for smoking do not contain more than fifty percent (50%) of the seating capacity of the restaurant.
SECTION 4. (1) In areas where smoking is permitted in Section 3 of this act, the owner, manager or agent in charge of the premises or vehicle referred to in Section 3 shall conspicuously display signs that designate both smoking and nonsmoking areas, except that signs are not required in private offices.
(2) In complying with subsection (1) of this section, the owner, manager or agent in charge of the premises or vehicle shall make every reasonable effort to prevent designated smoking areas from impinging upon designated smoke-free areas by the use of existing physical barriers and ventilation systems.
SECTION 5. Any person who violates Section 3 or 4 of this act is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, shall be fined not less than Twenty-five Dollars ($25.00) nor more than One Hundred Dollars ($100.00).
SECTION 6. Nothing contained in this act shall be construed to restrict the power or authority of any county, municipality or other political subdivision of the state to adopt and enforce local ordinances or regulations that are at least as restrictive as the applicable standard set forth in this act.
SECTION 7. This act shall not be construed as amending or repealing Section 97-35-1(4) regarding smoking on a passenger bus.
SECTION 8. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 1997.