Cigar aficionados soon might have places in Washington where they can legally light their stogies indoors.
The state Senate in a 26-21 vote Tuesday passed a bill by Sen. Jerome Delvin, R-Richland, making an exemption to the state's indoor smoking ban for cigar rooms and tobacconists. The bill moves to the House.
The bill establishes a special license endorsement for up to 100 cigar rooms, which would each pay $17,500 for a state endorsement.
Up to 500 tobacco shops would have the option to pay $6,000 each to allow indoor cigar and pipe smoking.
Any place where cigar smoking is allowed would be physically separated from places where smoking is banned by law. Cigarettes would not be allowed. Applicants also would need a valid liquor license.
The tobacconist endorsement would be allowed only for businesses with the primary purpose of selling tobacco and tobacco-related paraphernalia.