Only 21 of Illinois' 1,200 cities, towns and villages are allowed to regulate smoking under current state law. Proposed legislation would extend that power to all Illinois communities.
Illinois Restaurant Association president Colleen McShane says local smoking bans hurt businesses that compete with nearby communities without them.
McShane says the increased regulation isn't needed as many restaurants have already banned smoking on their own or increased non-smoking sections.
Health advocates say secondhand smoke is not only a nuisance, but harmful to workers in businesses that allow smoking. They want local government to have the power to enact indoor smoking bans.
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