Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act
The following is provided for general informational purposes only and is not to be used as a defense in any proceeding related to enforcement. Persons wanting legal advice as to the specific application of the law to their situation should contact their legal counsel and or local authorities who are charged with enforcement.
What is the purpose of the law?
The purpose of the Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act is to protect the public health by reducing exposure to secondhand smoke in public places and places of employment.
What does the law cover?
Effective July 1, 2010, smoking is prohibited in most of the following indoor locations in Kansas:
- Places of employment
- Taxicabs and limousines
- Lobbies, hallways and other common areas in apartment buildings and other multiple-residential facilities
- Restrooms, lobbies and other common areas in hotels and motels
- Within 10 feet of any doorway, open window and air intake of establishments where smoking is prohibited
Are there any exceptions to the law?
Yes. The following locations are exempt from the Indoor Clean Air Act:
- Please be advised that the local city or county smoking laws remain in effect and may be stricter than the state law.
- Tobacco shops that derive not less than 65 percent of gross receipts from the sale of tobacco
- Gaming floors of lottery gaming facilities or racetrack gaming facilities
- Up to 20 percent of hotel/motel sleeping rooms
- Designated indoor areas of private outdoor recreational clubs (i.e. golf clubs, hunting clubs) where minors are prohibited.
- Designated smoking areas of adult care homes and long-term care facilities.
- Class A and B private clubs licensed before January 1, 2009, that notify the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment by September 28, 2010, of their intent to allow smoking. (See the question below related to this Class A & B Club exemption.)
What are the penalties for breaking the law?
Fines, for owners/operators and smokers:
- 1st violation = not more than $100
- 2nd violation within 1 year = not more than $200
- 3rd and additional violations within 1 year = not more than $500 per violation
- Each individual smoking in an establishment where smoking is prohibited is a separate violation for the business.
How will this law be enforced?
Local law enforcement (police or sheriff) have the authority to enforce the Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act. Violators will be guilty of a cigarette or tobacco infraction (see fines above).
Where do I send a complaint?
Complaints/reports of violations should be directed to your local law enforcement office (police or sheriff).
Are signs required and where can they be obtained?
Effective July 1, 2010, smoke-free public places that prohibit smoking are required to post signs that have the international no smoking symbol and state that smoking is prohibited by state law. These signs are available for free by download or mail upon request at www.KSsmokefree.org/no_smoking_sign.html.
Where should no smoking signs be posted?
The only guidance in the law on sign location is that signs should be posted in a conspicuous place. Section 4 of the Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act states, “The proprietor or other person in charge of the premises of a public place, or other area where smoking is prohibited, shall post or cause to be posted in a conspicuous place signs displaying the international no smoking symbol and clearly stating that smoking is prohibited by state law.” The law will be enforced by local law enforcement. Therefore, it is the city, county or district attorney who will interpret the law. It is recommended that you contact the city, county or district attorney for further clarification.
Do signs need to be posted in each business within a larger office building or just on the main entrances to the building?
The law states that a sign must be posted in a conspicuous place in each building. Smoking would not be allowed in that building, except for a Class A or B club that has been granted an exemption. The law will be enforced by local law enforcement. Therefore, it is the city, county or district attorney who will interpret the law. I recommend you contact the city, county or district attorney for further clarification.
Is there a limit to the number of signs I can request?
No, you may request as many signs as you need. Just let us know the size, type and quantity (¼ page or ½ page window cling, or ½ page cardstock with adhesive).
Is smoking allowed in Class A or B Clubs like VFWs or American Legions?
It depends if the club meets the exemption requirements. Class A and B private clubs licensed before January 1, 2009, that notify the Secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment by September 28, 2010, of their intent to allow smoking will be able to allow smoking. Please be advised that the local city or county smoking laws remain in effect and may be stricter than the state law.
Can a Class A or B Club allow smoking during a public event such as bingo?
According to the Kansas Department of Revenue Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) smoking shall be prohibited in areas of a Class A or B club that are open to the public. An exemption to the Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act allows smoking in areas of the club that are only open to club members and their guests. Areas that are open to the general public are no smoking areas. Read the Kansas Department of Revenue policy on Public Events at Private Clubs for details on the procedures Class A and B Clubs need to follow for a public event.
How do I know which Class A and B Clubs allow smoking?
Is there a distance requirement away from doors where smokers can smoke outside?
Yes, smoking is prohibited within 10 feet of any doorway, open window and air intake of establishments where smoking is prohibited.
Can we provide a covered area outside for smokers?
The Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act allows smoking in outside areas that are not enclosed and are at least 10 feet from any doorway, open window or air intake of an enclosed area. According to Section 2 (e) “the following shall not be considered an “enclosed area”: (1) Rooms or areas, enclosed by walls, windows or doorways, having neither a ceiling nor a roof and which are completely open to the elements and weather at all times; and (2) rooms or areas, enclosed by walls, fences, windows or doorways and a roof or ceiling, having openings that are permanently open to the elements and weather and which comprise an area that is at least 30% of the total perimeter wall area of such room or area.”
Other Business Questions
What steps do businesses need to take to comply with the law?
Visit the Business Toolkit for more details for businesses.
Does the law affect day care homes?
Yes. While smoking is already prohibited in day care homes when children not related to the owner are present, the Indoor Clean Air Act adds an additional penalty for violators. In addition to any civil fine which may be levied, any day care home that violates any provision of this act may also be subject to criminal punishment.
Does this law affect tobacco self-service displays?
Effective July 1, 2010 it is unlawful to sell cigarettes or tobacco products by a self-service display (an area openly accessibly to consumers without the assistance of a salesperson) except in a vending machine that is permitted by law. There are also new Federal FDA regulations. Please visit the FDA Web site for information on the FDA regulations.
Is smoking allowed in private offices or break rooms?
Can people smoke in a business when it is NOT open to the public such as after hours, on weekends, or on holidays?
No. Smoking is prohibited at all times in businesses that are not exempt.
Does the law apply to work vehicles?
The Kansas Indoor Clean Air Act does not mention work vehicles other than taxis and limousines. Smoking is prohibited in taxis and limousines. Businesses may restrict smoking in vehicles as company policy, but it is not part of the State law.
What about local smoke-free air laws?
Where local clean indoor air laws have provisions stricter than the state law, these local provisions will prevail. Where local laws have provisions less strict than the state law, state law provisions will prevail effective July 1, 2010.
Is smoking prohibited at Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meetings?
Types of meetings are not listed in the law as exemptions. Exemptions are based on location. AA and NA meetings are often held in churches and community centers. These locations are smoke-free locations. Individuals may step outside (10 feet from any doorways, open windows or air intakes) to smoke, but they may not smoke in the facility.
If an AA meeting is held in one of the exempt locations listed on the Fact Sheet [link to http://www.kssmokefree.org/fact_sheet.html] smoking is allowed. If the meeting is not held in an exempt location, smoking is prohibited in the building.
How are the materials for implementation of the Indoor Clean Air Act being paid for?
The materials for the implementation of the Indoor Clean Air Act are being paid for by contributions of partner organizations and through federal funding. State funds are not being used.
What resources are available to help people quit smoking?
The Kansas Tobacco Quitline, 1-800-QUIT-NOW (784-8669), provides free, private, one-on-one phone counseling to any Kansan ready to quit tobacco use. Smokers, spit-tobacco users, family and friends of tobacco users, and health professionals can call the Quitline for help and information. Quitting tobacco use is the best thing you can do for your health. Intake is available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day.
A Quitline counselor will help you:
- Set a quit date to help your chance of success
- Learn ways to cope with cravings and withdrawal
- Change your habits related to smoking or chewing
- Avoid weight gain and other side effects
- Find other local support
- Get support whenever you are tempted to smoke or chew