Paducah Smoking Ban

Proposed Amendments to the Smoking Ordinance

At the January 9, 2018, meeting, the Paducah Board of Commissioners introduced an ordinance to amend Paducah’s smoking ban ordinance to continue the prohibition of smoking in enclosed public places and to extend the prohibition to all places of employment, whether public or private.  The amendment to the current ordinance also would prohibit smoking in city-owned outdoor areas including playgrounds and public parks with limited exceptions.  The definition of smoking also is being amended to include the use of an electronic smoking device.  The definition of place of employment in the amended ordinance means an enclosed area under the control of a public or private employer, including, but not limited to, work areas, private offices, employee lounges, restrooms, conference rooms, meeting rooms, classrooms, employee cafeterias, hallways, construction sites, temporary offices, and vehicles.  A private residence is not a place of employment unless it is used as a child care, adult day care, or health care facility.

After introducing the ordinance, the Paducah Board of Commissioners discussed topics including hotels that allow smoking rooms, private establishments where people pay dues for membership, and enforcement issues.  At this time, no date has been announced for the second reading of the ordinance.

Paducah adopted a smoking ban ordinance in 2006.  Paducah’s existing ordinance prohibits the smoking of tobacco products in buildings open to the public. Members of the McCracken County Agency for Substance Abuse Policy (ASAP) have been working since 2016 to educate the community about amending the City’s ordinance to make it more of a comprehensive smoke-free ordinance.  Presentations by the group were given at the August 8, 2017, and December 19, 2017, City Commission meetings.

View the Proposed Amendments to Smoking Ordinance >>

About the Current Paducah Smoking Ban

The Paducah Board of Commissioners adopted an ordinance on September 22, 2006 that prohibits the smoking of tobacco products in buildings open to the public.  The ordinance was adopted with a deadline for compliance by April 1, 2007.     -Paducah Smoking Ban Ordinance-

On January 20, 2010 the Kentucky Center for Smoke-free Policy released a report that shows as a result of compliance with Paducah's smoke-free law that covers all workplaces and places open to the public, the indoor air quality in Paducah public venues improved by 89%.  Indoor air quality was assessed in nine businesses before and after implementation of the Paducah smoking ban.

-News Release:  Indoor Air Quality Results, January 2010-

-Report:  Indoor Air Quality Results, January 2010-

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the smoking ordinance just for restaurants and bars?     No, the no-smoking ordinance is NOT just for restaurants. It applies to any public building or enclosed area that is open to the public.

Where are some of the places that smoking IS definitely allowed?     Smoking is allowed:  at home, in hotel rooms where smoking is permitted, in private offices, in outdoor beer gardens, and in break rooms when there is another smoke-free break room.

Where are some of the places that smoking IS DEFINITELY NOT allowed?     Smoking is not allowed:  in restaurants or bars, in hotel lobbies or business lobbies that are open to the public, in bingo halls or church recreation rooms, in government buildings frequented by the public, and in public hallways and bathrooms.

Can I add an outdoor beer garden to my bar or restaurant and allow smoking in it?     Yes, but before you spend any money on fencing or sunshades, check with the Fire Prevention Division at 270-444-8527. There are fire exit, setback, and other life-safety code rules that apply to outdoor service areas attached to a bar or restaurant. City staff members will make sure your plans comply with the rules.

Responsibility of Business Owners

If you are an owner, employer, manager, or person in control of an enclosed area and someone smokes in your establishment on or after April 1, 2007, you have the responsibility to ask them to refrain from smoking in the public area. If they refuse, you note this response, report it with the Paducah Police Department (270-444-8550), and the individual can receive fines starting at $50. If as owner you refuse to ask patrons not to smoke, you can be cited with fines up to $250. In addition to individual persons being fined, if the same business (whether owner, employer, manager, or person in control of an enclosed area) violates this ordinance three times in one year, the result could be the suspension or revocation of any permit or business license issued by the City for the premises where the violation occurs.

The ordinance also calls for No Smoking Signs or the International No Smoking Symbol to be clearly posted in every building and enclosed area. All ashtrays and ash containers are to be removed.

Responsibility of Patrons & Citizens

A person who smokes in an area regardless of the owner's reminder that smoking is prohibited in an area can be fined $50.  They may also be asked to leave the premises if they refuse to do so.