The following were among actions taken at Tuesday's meeting of the Prince George's County Council. For more information, call 952-5182.
SMOKING BAN -- The council voted 6 to 2 to ban smoking in all areas except one room on the County Administration Building's second floor where the nine members' offices are located.
Members Sue V. Mills and Floyd E. Wilson voted against the ban, which comes several weeks after County Executive Parris Glendening called for a smoke-free environment and banned smoking in the all of the six-story building except the second floor.
Glendening, a nonsmoker, agreed to let the council decide whether to ban smoking in areas where they conduct business.
Both bans become effective Monday.
The council's vote comes a month before a new county-sponsored "smoke enders" program is scheduled to begin in the administration building. County officials said the program is designed to help smokers kick the habit and will be held during lunch hours. It was scheduled to coincide with Glendening's ban.
Mills said she voted against the second-floor smoking ban because she felt the council should wait until the smoke enders program begins. "That program is not even starting until the middle of the month," she said. "I think it's inhumane, mean and nasty."
The council voted to have one smoking room for the sake of Mills, who smokes, and for some of their staff members who smoke.
Glendening's ban, however, will not allow designated smoking areas on the five remaining floors, including the lower level where many of the building's 2,000 employees eat lunch.
Glendening, who was not at the meeting, had said his ban is necessary because of the health dangers posed by tobacco.
RADON GAS -- The council directed the county health department to ask utility companies to mail pamphlets on radon gas to county residents.
County Health Officer Helen B. McAllister two weeks ago told the council that radon, a colorless, odorless gas that can cause lung cancer if absorbed for a long period of time, is not a major health hazard in Prince George's County because few homes have been plagued by the gas.
County officials have reviewed data on radon tests conducted in 419 homes and found that 82 percent had radon levels below what the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says is safe -- four picocuries per liter, McAllister said. The tests were conducted by individual homeowners at their own expense.
The council also agreed to establish a study group to work county and state officials' task force on radon gas.