Cordray sues bars over smoking ban

Ashley Stinnett Aug. 18, 2009, 2:49pm


COLUMBUS, Ohio (Legal Newsline) - Ohio Attorney General Richard Cordray on Friday filed lawsuits against two bars over allegations both establishments violated the state's Smoke-free Workplace Act.

The lawsuits were filed against O'Neals Tavern in Cincinnati and Zeno's in Columbus. Cordray says both bars have been in violation of state law dating back to 2007.

O'Neal's Tavern has been cited for 12 violations totaling more than $21,000 in fines and Zeno's has been cited for nine violations resulting in more than $28,000 in fines.

The lawsuit seeks a court order requiring both bars to comply with the state's smoking ban.

"The issue at hand is clear disregard for Ohio law," Cordray said. "These establishments have been warned and fined repeatedly over a two-year period to no avail. They continuously push the limits and have given us no alternative but to seek the court's intervention."

In Nov. 2006, the state legislature passed the smoking ban, joining 12 other states. Since enforcement of the law began May 3, 2007, more than 44,000 complaints have been made to state officials.

More than 280,000 public places and places of employment are covered by the indoor smoking ban.

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