Following the news that two bills in Washington State may grant cigar lounges and tobacconists the right to apply for licenses to allow smoking on their premises, we see similar hopeful developments in Illinois.
Illinois House Bill 1310 would allow the state’s liquor boards to issue smoking licenses to cigar lounges and tobacconists, much in the manner that the boards already grant liquor licenses to restaurants and bars. The bill would require that the licensed shops and bars post notices to alert the public that smoking is permitted on their premises. The bill received its original sponsorship from Representatives Anthony DeLuca and Randy Ramey before Representatives Daniel Burke, Robert Rita and Rita Mayfield joined forces with them to support the bill.
The International Premium Cigar & Pipe Retailers Association (IPCPR) has been urging their membership and all the residents of Illinois to contact their senators and representatives asking them to support the bill. IPCPR’s legislative director Chris McCalla is very optimistic about the bill. “Now here’s a piece of tobacco-related legislation that is good for the state, good for business, and good for the economy in general. The smoking ban effectively obliterated cigar bars from the state. This legislation would allow for their welcomed return.”