Sections 191.765 – 191.777 R.S.Mo., known commonly as the Missouri Clean Indoor Air Law, addresses the issue of smoking in public placesin Missouri.[i] The laws of Missouri prohibit people from smoking in public places or meetings except in designated smoking areas.[ii] § 191.767 R.S.Mo. states that no person shall smoke in a public place or in a public meeting except in a designated smoking area.
Smoking areas may be designated by persons having custody or control of public places, except in places in which smoking is prohibited by the fire marshal or by other law, ordinance or regulation.[iii] No public place shall have more than thirty percent of its entire space designated as a smoking area.[iv] Designated smoking area should be provided for state employees to smoke during the work day[v] and in case of restaurants, there should also be designated nonsmoking areas of sufficient size to accommodate the demand by customers or patrons.[vi]
Smoking is permitted in places that are not considered as “public places.” These include[vii] an entire room or hall which is used for private social functions, if the seating arrangements are under the control of the sponsor of the function; in limousines for hire and in taxicabs, where the driver and all passengers agree to smoking in such vehicle. Smoking is permitted for performers on the stage, provided that the smoking is part of the production as well as in a place where more than fifty percent of the volume of trade or business carried on is that of the blending of tobaccos or sale of tobaccos, cigarettes, pipes, cigars or smoking sundries. It is also permitted in bars, taverns, restaurants that seat less than fifty people, bowling alleys and billiard parlors, which conspicuously post signs stating that “Nonsmoking Areas are Unavailable”, in private residences, and in enclosed indoor arena, stadium or other facility which may be used for sporting events and which has a seating capacity of more than fifteen thousand persons.
The laws of Missouri state that reasonable efforts must be taken to prevent smoking in the public place or public meeting. [viii] Appropriate signs must be posted indicating no-smoking or smoking area and seating arrangements must be made accordingly. Seating arrangements must utilize available ventilation systems and physical barriers to isolate designated smoking areas. The people in charge of such places should also make a reasonable request to persons who smoke to move to a designated smoking area. In theatres, smoking should be allowed only in designated areas of the lobbies.
A person who smokes in areas where smoking is prohibited and a proprietor or other person in charge of a public place or public meeting who permits, causes, suffers or allows a person to smoke in areas where smoking is prohibited is guilty of infraction.[ix]
Smoking is also prohibited in indoor area of public elementary or secondary school building or educational facility and on buses used solely to transport students to or from school or to transport students to or from any place for educational purposes. This regulation does not apply to institutions of higher education. The school board of any school district may set policy on the permissible uses of tobacco products in any other non classroom or non student occupant facility, and on the school grounds or outdoor facility areas. Any person who violates these provisions will be guilty of an infraction.[x]
A person who smokes or uses tobacco products in any area of a child care facility licensed by the department of health and senior services, during the period of time when the children cared for under that license are present is also guilty of an infraction.[xi]
Enforcement of the smoking regulations prescribes a penalty for an infraction by persons found guilty of violating this law.[xii] The penalty for an infraction is a fine up to $200 for an individual and up to $500 for a corporation. Enforcement authority rests upon local prosecutors.
[ii] § 191.767 R.S.Mo.(1)
[iii] § 191.767 R.S.Mo.(2)
[iv] § 191.767 R.S.Mo.(3)
[v] § 191.767 R.S.Mo.(4)
[vi] § 191.767 R.S.Mo.(5)
[vii] § 191.769 R.S.Mo.
[viii] § 191.771 R.S.Mo.
[ix] § 191.773 R.S.Mo.
[x] § 191.775 R.S.Mo.
[xi] § 191.776 R.S.Mo.