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No Smoking Law Effective July 1, 2003

June 31, 2003

Constitutional Amendment 6, which was enacted by Florida voters in last year’s general election to ban smoking in the workplace, goes into effect tomorrow, July 1.

While most of the news stories on this issue have focused on the exemptions from the law, such as stand-alone bars and hotel rooms, Amendment 6 bans smoking in virtually every indoor area where one or more persons engages in work. If you allow smoking in your building after June 30, you may be liable for fines ranging from $250 to $2,000. The fines will only be levied if a complaint is filed and the business refuses to comply.

Bringing your business up to compliance should be relatively easy:

  • If you allow smoking in your building now, send a memo to employees telling them that smoking will no longer be allowed in any indoor area.
  • If you have a no-smoking policy in place that designates certain areas where smoking is allowed, send out a memo to your employees informing them that smoking is no longer allowed in any indoor area.
  • If you currently have signs in your building that designate smoking areas, remove the signs and replace them with no smoking signs.
  • You may choose to designate a specific outdoor smoking area so that employees don’t congregate at the entrances to your building. The Legislature has limited the kinds of outdoor areas where smoking can be allowed. An area with a roof over it may be used as a smoking area unless it is screened in or if there are walls that cover at least 50 percent of the sides of the area. Letting employees smoke in a shed that is enclosed on three sides, for example, might be a violation.


The state agencies that will enforce Amendment 6 have until December 27, 2003, to implement the rules they will have to follow. The staff of Associated Industries of Florida will be tracking this process and will keep you advised of any important developments.

If you have any specific questions about fulfilling your obligations under Amendment 6, contact the Department of Health, Bureau of Facility Programs at 1-800-337-3742.

 

Click here to read HB 63A, Which the Legislature enacted To implement Amendment 6