Okla. physicians want local control smoking rules

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Some Oklahoma physicians are urging state lawmakers to pass legislation to permit cities and towns adopt anti-smoking ordinances that are more restrictive than state law.

The physicians appeared at the state Capitol Monday urging the Senate Health and Human Services Committee to approve the measure. A similar bill died in the Senate last year.

Oklahoma's health commissioner, Dr. Terry Cline, says the measure is the single most important bill in the Legislature this year to improve the health of Oklahomans. Cline, a psychologist, says that if passed local communities could ban smoking in parks and other public places as well as bars and restaurants.

Dr. Murali Krishna, president of the state Board of Health, said the passage of smoke-free ordinances reduces the risk of heart attack and other smoking-related conditions.

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