St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley this morning signed a smoking-ban bill
that will bring the measure before voters on November 3.
Dooley endorsed the bill despite objections from health agencies
-- including the American Cancer Society -- which wanted him to veto what they view as weak legislation that doesn't fully ban smoking in public places.
The current bill excludes casinos, smoking areas at the airport and
bars in St. Louis County that earn less than 25 percent of their
revenue from food sales.
Prior to this morning's action it had been debated whether Dooley would sign the bill
after he vetoed similar legislation in 2006 for fear it would negatively impact businesses.
Dooley recognized that the "bill is not perfect" but told reporters: "I
recognize as well that people should have the opportunity to vote on
this important health issue."