City Employee Tobacco Ban Shot Down in Florida

Brooksville City Council members recently rejected a comprehensive tobacco ban proposal that, among other provisions, would have required all city employees to quit using tobacco or risk the possibility of losing their job.

The Tobacco Free Workplace Policy also sought to deny employment to any applicants who admitted to using tobacco. In addition, the policy prohibited use of tobacco in and on city-owned or leased premises, including inside personal vehicles of employees and non-employee visitors parked on the premises.

"I want a smoke-free environment, but not a dictatorship," said Vice Mayor Richard Lewis at Monday's City Council meeting, according to an article in the St. Petersburg Times.

Mayor Lara Bradburn backed the policy change, according to the article, because it would decrease the city's health care costs while promoting healthy living choices.

"That's being a fiscally responsible employer," Bradburn said at the meeting.

The rejected policy change has been set aside until a later date.

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