Hopes for anti-tobacco forces to ban smoking at the gambling floors of state-regulated casino were left smoldering Tuesday when a Senate subcommittee decided to delay action to gather more information.
Senate Study Bill 1107 seeks to lift the exemption from Iowa’s Clean Indoor Air Act that took effect July 1, 2008.
Dr. Richard Deming, a radiation oncologist who is medical director of the Mercy Cancer Center in Des Moines, told subcommittee members that “Iowa was on the forefront of forward-thinking” when the Legislature and former Gov. Chet Culver agreed to ban smoking in most public areas and workplaces – with the exception of gambling areas and the Iowa Veterans Home.
Deming said there are more than 3,400 lung cancer deaths and 46,000 heart attack deaths annually associated with the detrimental effects of second-hand smoke, as well as significant costs related to illnesses and employee absenteeism.