Smoking fines cost Ohio bar liquor permit renewal

A Cincinnati-area bar has become Ohio's first establishment to have its liquor permit renewal denied over the state's smoking ban.

The Ohio Division of Liquor Control notified Peg's Pub in Evendale in a letter mailed last week that the renewal was denied because of unpaid fines from the four-year-old law prohibiting smoking in many indoor places. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports the bar owed the state about $56,000 plus interest and additional costs as of July 8.

The Ohio Division of Liquor Control says the pub's owner has 30 days to appeal the order and can continue selling liquor during that time. Pub owner David Pitzer says he is selling liquor and will appeal the order.

A state database shows $1.7 million in smoking fines are unpaid statewide.

Do you think the state made the right decision in denying a liquor permit over unpaid smoking ban fines? Do you think the state should close more bars over smoking? Post your comments below.

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