Update: Legislative committee votes on cigar bars

Posted By: Jenn Hatcher


LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) A bill to allow smoking in designated cigar shops will be debated by the full Nebraska Legislature.

The General Affairs committee voted 7-0 Wednesday to advance the measure, with one senator abstaining.

The measure by Sen. Tyson Larson of O’Neill would exclude cigar shops from the 2008 Nebraska Clean Indoor Air Act, which aimed to protect citizens from secondhand smoke. Until last August, indoor smoking was allowed in cigar bars, hotel guest rooms and tobacco-only retailers.

In August, the Nebraska Supreme Court struck down the exceptions for cigar shops and retailers as unconstitutional. Larson’s bill would reinstate the exception for cigar shops under the justification that patrons and employees enter the smoky environments by choice.