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Oklahoma State Senate
Communications Division
State Capitol
Oklahoma City, OK 73105

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For Immediate Release: March 7, 2007

Senator Cliff Branan
Senator Cliff Branan

Senate Okays Bill to Ban Smoking at Zoos

The Senate has voted to approve legislation that would ban smoking at zoos in Oklahoma. Sen. Cliff Branan is the author of Senate Bill 473, which was approved on Wednesday.

“We already have laws on the books banning smoking in public places, but those places are defined as being indoors only,” said Branan, R-Oklahoma City. “SB 473 will address that loophole by specifically extending that ban to zoos, including both indoor and outdoor exhibit spaces. No other outdoor venues would be impacted by this legislation.”

Branan told fellow members that in 2006, approximately 40 percent of the visitors to the Oklahoma City Zoo were children. The Tulsa Zoo reports similar numbers.

“Every year, thousands of children come to our zoos with their families or other group outings. They shouldn’t have to be exposed to secondhand smoke,” Branan said. “Not only that, far too often the cigarette butts wind up in the exhibits with the animals, and that’s certainly not good for them. This bill will create a healthier environment for people visiting the zoo as well as for the animals.”

The next step in the legislative process for SB 473 will be consideration by a House Committee.

For more information contact:
Senator Branan's Office - (405) 521-5543

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