A proposal to ban the use of e-cigarettes in restaurants, offices and other public spaces cleared a Minneapolis City Council committee Monday.
After listening to testimony from nearly two dozen people -- about half in favor of tighter rules, half opposed -- the council's Health, Environment and Community Engagement Committee voted 6-0 in support of the regulations. The move follows a recent change in state law banning the devices from schools, hospitals and public university campuses.
Supporters, including a handful of medical professionals, told council members that e-cigarettes release potentially harmful vapor into the air and serve as a way to get young people hooked on nicotine. Opponents said such claims lack verification and pointed to high numbers of people who have used e-cigarettes to break addictions to traditional tobacco products.
The issue will now go to the full council for a vote.