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Indiana court throws out Evansville smoking ban

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press
Tuesday, February 11, 2014 - 1:45 pm

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Supreme Court says Evansville officials can't spare a casino based there from its smoking ban.

The justices voted 4-1 to throw out the part of the ban that prohibits smoking in taverns and private clubs but exempts the riverboat casino that's docked at the Ohio River city.

The ruling says exempting the casino from the ban violates the Indiana Constitution. The Supreme Court reversed an appeals court ruling that upheld the ordinance.

The city's ban took effect in April 2012 and prohibits smoking in all businesses other than the Tropicana Evansville casino. Opponents of the ban argued that its treats their businesses unfairly.

Justice Loretta Rush dissented. She says the casino serves out-of-town customers the others don't. She also cites the casino's local tax impact.