Pima County delays no-smokers hiring policy vote


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TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The Pima County Board of Supervisors has delayed a vote to implement a ban on hiring smokers.

The board was scheduled to vote on the ban on Tuesday. County administrator Chuck Huckelberry asked the board to hold off until Feb. 10 while he gathers more information.

The board approved his request, although one member objected and said the board should move forward.

The proposal is to have the county government turn away job applicants who smoke. It would also impose a 30 percent health insurance surcharge on current county employees who smoke or consume other tobacco products.

County health officials say the policy could lead to more than $1 million in savings annually in health-care costs.

The county estimates 32 percent of its more than 2,000 workers are tobacco users.

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