SIOUX FALLS — Bar owners and pub patrons appear to be complying with an indoor smoking ban, state data show.
South Dakota’s voter-approved smoking ban started two years ago.
Statewide, 16 citations have been issued to patrons for smoking where it’s banned, and four bars have been cited for not informing patrons of the law.
Violation of either portion of the law is a petty offense resulting in a $25 fine.
Capt. James Hoekman, of the Minnehaha County Sheriff’s Office, said deputies actively monitored liquor establishments. Only one Minnehaha County bar and three patrons have been cited.
“We do bar checks throughout the county periodically, and I can’t remember the last time we’ve got a complaint about smoking in a bar,” he said. “The numbers sure don’t show it being an issue.”
Dave Knudson was Senate majority leader in the state Legislature in 2010 and introduced the legislation that voters ultimately approved later that year. Knudson said there were no expectations for the number of citations to be issued.
“I think the ban has worked wonderfully. Voluntary compliance has been very strong on that,” he said. “We anticipated that there would be universal compliance. I don’t think anybody anticipated there would be a lot of violations ticketed.”