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New group of business owners and others forms to fight indoor smoking ban

WICHITA — More than 50 business owners and other people concerned about the state's new indoor smoking ban met Thursday for the first meeting of Kansas Right to Choose.

"Everybody's upset," says Ali Issa, who hosted the meeting at his Heat Cigar & Hookah Lounge.

The group is trying to organize a public meeting for next week for other business owners "and also people who do not smoke but don't like the idea of the state telling you what to do," Issa says.

He says people from around the state are joining the group.

Issa says the goal is to get as many members as possible to barrage legislators with calls and e-mails voicing their opposition to the ban, which takes effect in most places July 1.

Rep. Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, is one of the people who attended the inaugural meeting.