Okla. governor signs smoke-room rebate bill

OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma restaurants that created separately ventilated smoking rooms will get a rebate to convert them to smoke-free under a new law.

Gov. Brad Henry signed the Clean Air in Restaurants Act during a ceremony on Friday.

The voluntary program authorizes the State Department of Health to implement the rebate program. It would allow restaurants to recover 50 percent of the original expenditure, minus depreciation costs, if it converts to a smoke-free restaurant by January 2013.

The bill directs the Health Department to fund the program using a fund that includes money from the state's tobacco tax.

Restaurants were allowed to maintain separate smoking rooms under a public smoking ban law that took effect in 2003.