Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has made it easier for new cigar bars to open and cigar smokers to light up in those establishments.
To do so, the state’s Clean Indoor Air Act needed to be amended to allow for the establishment of new cigar bars following a 2012 expansion of the act to cover most public places and workplaces. The bill that was passed and signed into law removes the moratorium on the establishment of new cigar bars, as well as allowing retail tobacco shops to serve food and beverages, as long as a food handler’s permit is not required to do so.
In order to be in compliance with the law, cigar bars must not allow anyone under the age of 21 inside, they must hold a permit to serve beer, wine and/or liquor, they must generate at least 10% of sales from tobacco or the rental of on-site humidors, and they must only allow the smoking of cigars–not cigarettes, electronic cigarettes or hookah–while posting signage that indicates as such.
The bill that Gov. Pence signed was spearheaded by Rep. Ed Clere, who wanted to help a constituent of his open a new cigar bar but didn’t have a way to do so given the state’s current law.
The changes go into effect on July 1.