Variation in Local Enforcement of State Public Health Policy

Year: 2010
Funding: Quick Strike Research Award
Status: Completed

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When Ohio’s smoke-free workplace act went into effect in May 2007, enforcement responsibilities were delegated to local public health agencies without additional state funds to support these new roles. In addition, the punitive fines prescribed in the law were graduated and allowed substantial local public health discretion in both the magnitude and frequency of fines. This study examines the causes and consequences of local variation in public health enforcement of the tobacco law, with particular attention to the effects of the recent economic downturn on public health decision-making regarding enforcement. The study sets the stage for a larger investigation of the consequences of local variation in enforcement with regard to policy impact on exposure to environmental tobacco smoke.


Enforcement of Ohio’s Smoke Free Workplace Law Through the Lens of Public Health Practice (Public Health Reports-January 2013)

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Scott Frank, M.D., M.S.

Matthew Stefanak, M.P.H.