Indianapolis bar owners challenge city’s smoking ban

The Indiana Court of Appeals has heard arguments from the owners of two Indianapolis bars who want to overturn the city's 2012 ban on smoking.

Attorneys for the bar owners argued before the court Monday that the city shouldn’t be allowed to ban smoking at bars that don't offer gambling when it allows smoking at off-track betting facilities.

The Indianapolis Star reports that attorney Mark Small said the gambling exemption could be considered unconstitutional. He told the court that this simply is a case of unequal treatment in Indiana.

The city’s smoking ban applies to bars, restaurants serving only patrons 18 or older, bowling alleys, hotel and hotel rooms, and nursing homes. But certain establishments are exempt, including cigar and hookah bars, as well as satellite gambling facilities.

The case is Whistle Stop Inn et al. v. City of Indianapolis et al., 49A02-1407-MI-519. Monday’s oral argument may be viewed here.

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