Cigar smokers in Manhattan, Kan. got some good news on Wednesday, as the Manhattan City Commission approved the first reading of an ordinance that will create an exemption to the city’s existing law that will allow for smoking in tobacco shops and vaping in e-cigarette shops.

To qualify for the exemption, a tobacco shop must be an indoor area operated primarily for the retail sale of tobacco, tobacco products or smoking devices or accessories, and that derives not less than 65 percent of its gross receipts from the sale of tobacco. The same sales requirements apply to e-cigarette retailers.

Additionally, a tobacco shop must not share any enclosed common space, ventilation system, or any other system that compromises the right of nonsmokers and nonusers of e-cigarettes within another enclosed area to breathe smoke-free or vapor-free air.

The proposed exemption passed its first reading by a 3-2 vote but must still go through a second vote before it will become law. If it passes that second reading, it will go into effect upon publication in the official city newspaper.

Manhattan is located 120 miles west of Kansas City and is home to approximately 55,000 residents.

Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.