Senate Adds Exemption to Smoking Ban

Apr 24, 2012

The state Senate has adopted a budget amendment that would effectively lift Michigan’s ban on smoking at some charity events.

Specifically, the amendment would allow people to smoke at a charity cigar dinner held every year near Traverse City without worrying about the risk of a citation.

Republican state Senator Howard Walker sponsored the budget amendment. 

"That money goes to the needy in the community and I think it’s a very worthwhile fundraiser,” he says.

The amendment would also exempt other cigar dinner fundraisers that have been around 10 years or more. Detroit’s casinos, tribal land, cigar bars, and smoke shops have all been exempt from the ban since it was enacted in 2010.

Anti-smoking groups say they’ll put up a fight to get the amendment stripped from the budget.