Student Government

Smoking ban legislation introduced at SGA meeting

The much awaited smoking legislation was presented Wednesday night before the Student Government Association, but the bill is far from the expected complete ban on on-campus smoking.

Natural Sciences and Mathematics Senator Josie Ceasar and a co-author from the Collegiate Cancer Council did the initial reading of the bill, which will be edited and presented again at the next meeting.

“We’ve been talking to constituents, and we see that an outright ban is not needed at this moment.” Ceasar said when introducing the bill, “Basically what we’ve done is modify the [existing policy].”

The bill would, in it’s current state, ban smoking under covered pathways, “including, but not limited to, the PGH (Philip Guthrie Hoffman Hall) breezeway, the breezeway between Cougar Village and Moody Towers Dining Hall, the breezeway between Cynthia Wood Mitchell Center for the Arts and the Jack J. Valenti School of Communication.”

It would also ban smoking on “all pathways adjacent to the M.D. Anderson Library and Butler Plaza… all pathways adjacent to the Recreation and Wellness Center (…and) the pathways along the University Center Perimeter.”

The bill will likely undergo “serious editing” as it makes its way through committees over the next two weeks, College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Senator Lee Arnold said after the meeting.


  • I was there when it was read. After almost a month of speculation, it was finally showed to the public, and I have to say it's better than what I thought it would be. This is almost certainly due to the pressure shown by the community that has said that it is OK with smoking area's on campus, or not allowing smoking on certain area's.

    This bill goes a little too far though, on the walkways. Not all of them, I can understand the recreation and wellness center, but the paths adjacent to the UC, Library, and Butler Plaza are all frequented by students that are trying to get to the cars, or get to their final destination.

    However, the final qualm with the legislation is that it simply isn't possible to enforce. Perhaps I am idealist, but I feel that we should pass worthy legislation via the SGA, not just pass legislation that we feel good about. It's a body of elected students made to do a job, which is to provide a better atmosphere, and a better university for it's students. This bill is simply hallow in that it won't get enforced, just like how current smoking statutes aren't entirely enforced.


  • I am a non smoker, but I sympathize with those who do. It is a freedom that as Americans we should tolerate. We shouldn't necessarily encourage people to take up smoking, but we should not place such strong limitations on those who make that choice.

    Smoking indoors is bothersome to everyone, not just non smokers. Banning people from smoking under covered pathways is crap. What do they expect people to do when it is raining? I believe it becomes a slippery slope before we altogether ban smoking on campus. Before long, people will be limited to smoking in their car. I feel that these strong limitations on smoking make life harder in general for the student smoker. Why should they have to walk half way across campus when they are cramming for a test at the library, where every minute counts.

    Regardless of your feelings towards smoking, everyone can agree that it provides a good source of tax revenue.

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