State Preemption of Local Smoke-Free Laws in Government Work Sites, Private Work Sites, and Restaurants - United States, 2005-2009 by ProQuest

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Preemptive legislation at the state levels prohibits localities from enacting laws that vary from state law or are more stringent. A healthy people 2010 objective is to eliminate state laws that preempt stronger local tobacco control laws. Updates on previous analysis and summaries on changes in state laws that preempts local smoke-free laws in government work sites, private work sites, and restaurants in the US from 2005-2009 are presented. A CDC editorial note is also presented.

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									                                       MMWR Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report



 State Preemption of Local Smoke-Free Laws in Government
Work Sites, Private Work Sites, and Restaurants — United States,
                           2005–2009

    Smoke-free policies (i.e., policies that completely      status that took effect after December 31, 2009, were
eliminate smoking in indoor workplaces and public            excluded for this report.
places) result in health benefits, including prevent-             As of December 31, 2009, a total of 12 states
ing heart attacks (1–3). Preemptive legislation at the       had preemptive provisions in place for at least one
state level prohibits localities from enacting laws that     of the three settings, an improvement from 19 states
vary from state law or are more stringent. A Healthy         reported to have preemption in place as of December
People 2010 objective (27-19) is to eliminate state laws     31, 2004 (5). The number of states with preemption
that preempt stronger local tobacco control laws (4).        in all three settings decreased from 15 to eight during
A 2005 CDC review found that little progress was             the 5-year period. The number of states with preemp-
being made toward reducing the number of state laws          tive provisions covering government work sites, pri-
preempting local smoking restrictions in three indoor        vate work sites, and restaurants decreased from 16 to
settings: government work sites, private-sector work         nine, from 15 to nine, and from 18 to 12, respectively.
sites, and restaurants (5). These three settings were        During the study period, six states (Illinois, Iowa,
selected for analysis because they are settings that often   Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, and South Carolina)
are addressed by state and local smoking restrictions        removed preemption in all three settings. Three other
and because they are major settings where nonsmok-           states (North Carolina, Louisiana, and Mississippi)
ing workers and patrons are exposed to secondhand            rescinded preemption in one setting only (government
smoke (1). This report updates the previous analysis         work sites, restaurants, and government work sites,
and summarizes changes that occurred from December           respectively). For Louisiana and Mississippi, this was
31, 2004, to December 31, 2009, in state laws that pre-      the only setting where preemption was in place. In
empt local smoke-free laws for the same three settings.      contrast, as the result of a state supreme court ruling,
During that period, the number of states preempting          Washington went from having no preemption in any
local smoking restrictions in at least one of these three    setting to having preemption in two settings (govern-
settings decreased from 19 to 12. In contrast with the       ment work sites and restaurants).
2005 findings, this decrease indicates progress toward            States that rescinded preemptive provisions during
achieving the goal of eliminating state laws preempt-        2005–2009 did so through three different mecha-
ing local smoking restrictions. Further progress could       nisms: legislation, ballot measure, and court rulings.
result in additional reductions in secondhand smoke          Provisions preempting local smoking restrictions in at
exposure.                                                    least one of the three settings were rescinded by legis-
    For this analysis, preemption was defined as a           lative action in seven states. Six of these states (Iowa,
statute or judicial opinion that prevents local jurisdic-    Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, North Carolina,
tions from enacting smoking restrictions that would          and Oregon) rescinded preemption in conjunction
be more stringent than, or different from, state law.        with enactment of statewide legislation restricting
CDC monitors state laws that preempt local smok-             smoking in some settings; Illinois rescinded preemp-
ing restrictions (Table) using the CDC State Tobacco         tion as a stand-alone action.
Activities Tracking and Evaluation (STATE) system,                During the study period, two states had preemp-
an online electronic database that includes informa-         tive provisions take effect that included “sunset”
tion on state tobacco-related legislation.* The system       clauses under which these provisions also expired
tracks state statutes and court rulings for preemption       during the study period. Preemption established as a
provisions affecting local smoking restrictions in          
								
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