This week two anti-tobacco bills failed upon adjournment in the Kentucky legislature. Both bills (SB 258 and HB 147) were opposed by the Premium Cigar Association and a coalition of retailers, employees, consumers, and manufacturers who stepped up to voice their concerns against this harmful legislation.
SB 258 was a measure that would remove protections against employment discrimination based upon an individual’s status as a smoker or nonsmoker. SB 258 would allow employers to refuse to hire, discharge, or discriminate against an employee or applicant because the individual utilized any form of nicotine, in the form of legal tobacco products. The legislation would also allow employers to require abstention of tobacco products outside the course of employment.
HB 147 would allow any Kentucky city or county government to impose restrictions or requirements on the use, display, sale, and distribution of tobacco products or vapor products that are stricter than those imposed under state law.
Joshua Habursky PCA Head of Government Affairs notes, “These are important victories as we push back against opponents of premium cigars at all levels of government and especially beneficial to consumers in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Pushing back against the discrimination bill is especially important as other states consider highly restrictive measures that curtail personal choice in the tobacco space.”
The PCA thanks the collective efforts of retailers, manufacturers, and consumers in supporting the defense of the industry by letting their voices be heard through www.cigaraction.org.