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Connecticut casino smoking ban advances

24 March 2009

HARTFORD, Connecticut -- As reported by The Norwich Bulletin: "The state House Public Health Committee released a bill Monday that would ban smoking in the state's two American Indian-owned casinos by 2011. The process is in its infancy, but with a full Senate approval last year, advocates are hopeful of its passage and implementation.

"'We'd love to have it banned immediately. This is a workers health issue and a customer health issue. But given the current economic environment, we can support 2011,' said Bryte Johnson, Connecticut director of government relations and advocacy for the American Cancer Society.

"Both Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods Resort Casino owners oppose the legislation.

"'On behalf of the Mohegan Tribal Nation, I am truly disappointed to see that the Public Health committee is moving forward with a bill that infringes on our sovereign rights,' said Bruce 'Two Dogs' Bozsum, chairman of the Mohegan Tribal Council. 'Our objection is not about issues related to secondhand smoke. We are proud of the steps we have taken to mitigate smoke on reservation lands...'"

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