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Don't let casino bypass smoking law

Why let tobacco and gambling interests rewrite Maryland's tobacco rules?

The tobacco and casino industries are at it again, and the people of Maryland will pay the price if House Bill 1069 starts to gain some traction. This bill could potentially exempt casinos from the statewide smoke-free law that protects all indoor businesses in the state by allowing cigar smoking.

There are 7,500 adults in Maryland who die each year as a result of tobacco use, and smoking costs every single household in this state $824 in state and federal tax burdens. That's simply not fair, and casino profits can't be considered more important than the rights and health of the rest of our citizens.

The Maryland smoke-free law took hard work and dedication by volunteers and concerned citizens. Allowing special interests that profit from tobacco sales to create exemptions is simply not fair at any level. Moreover, it's just bad public policy.

Jacqueline Beale, Glenn Dale

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