Tuesday, September 09, 2008
Non-Smoking is Officially a Non-Issue in Pennsylvania
At least in most places it will be a non-issue...and virtually anywhere that we who enjoy good beer and good food will be frequenting in the future in the State of Pennsylvania. I'm surprised for all of the impassioned imploring for smoke-free bars, that once the announcement was made of the passed legislation, there wasn't much in the way of trumpeting on blogs, forums, or the like. I mean...we do care, right? What happened? No celebrations planned for this week as (most) Pennsylvania bars and restaurants are forced to go smoke-free? Though, I have noticed scattered e-mails from and home pages of businesses announcing their upcoming transition to a smoke-free environment. (Edit: and as I type, I trip upon a thread from our friends at BA who seem to have taken notice.) What might be interesting to see is which bars will continue to light up, coming in under the 20% food revenue threshold exemption. I also find it curious that the language of the state law appears to prohibit local municipalities from enacting stricter smoke-free policies. Apparently, this and other details of the law have forced the American Lung Association to withhold its endorsement (link to NBC news item). Still, most of us who enjoy quality food and beer will be able to do so unimpeded across Pennsylvania in a smoke-free environment beginning this coming Thursday, September 11th. And, that's a pretty good thing.