It appears once again government is intruding on the free will of its citizens. It appears that Texas HB 5/SB 544 will pass and become law.

It prohibits smoking on the premises of any public establishment and place of employment; it appears that even owners are not allowed to smoke in their offices.

Prohibits a person from smoking in the seating area of an outdoor arena, stadium, or amphitheater, or bleachers or grandstands for use by spectators at a sporting or other public event.

Prohibits a person from smoking within a distance of 15 feet outside an entrance, operable window, or ventilation system of an enclosed area in which smoking is prohibited. So in most cases a person will be in violation of the law if they are smoking walking on the sidewalk outside a mall or business.

Hotels must not have more than 20 % of their rooms as smoking rooms; the non-smoking rooms must be protected from any smoke invading the non-smoking room/floor.

Prohibits the formation of private clubs in an attempt to avoid this law.

The law requires an employer to provide written notice that smoking is prohibited in the place of employment to each prospective employee in any application the employer supplies and to each employee on the first day of employment.

The law requires public establishments and employers to post signs at each entrance that smoking is prohibited on site.

It will impose fines up to $500 to a violator of this law.

It places the compliance of the law upon owners, manager, operator, or employee of an establishment regulated under the bill.

The bill also allows for suspension and revoking the license/permit or other authority for the premises on which a violation of this chapter occurs.

I quit smoking some take ago. even though I don't know if the passage of this bill will affect me directly or not, there may be some indirect affect.

This law appears intrusive to me. Some business establishments by tradition have been places of heavy smoking---bars, strip-clubs, cigar and smoking clubs, and rodeos.

I see additional phone calls to law enforcement, the Department of State Health Services, and additional budget expenses for cities, counties, and the state.

I also see many city, county and state jails/prisons having to add additional staff to allow smoking.