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Pa. mayor nixes smoking ban, citing own 'research'

November 21, 2013
Associated Press

PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. (AP) — A western Pennsylvania mayor has vetoed a measure to ban outdoor smoking in public places saying he believes outdoor smoking is a civil liberty, and saying his own "research" suggests the cancer risk for exposure to secondhand smoke outdoors is a "red herring."

Punxsutawney Mayor James Wehrle (WER'-lee) tells WJAC-TV ( that people complain that secondhand smoke makes their clothes smell and bothers their children but says, "I think in open air, people can get out of the way."

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says secondhand smoke can cause or contribute to a variety of health issues, and says there's no risk-free level for exposure, indoors or out.

The council for the borough about 65 miles northeast of Pittsburgh may try to override the mayor's veto with another vote next month.


Information from: WJAC-TV,



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