Beverly Hills Outdoor Dining Smoking Ban Is in Effect
BEVERLY HILLS, Sept. 30, 2007 (none) -- An ordinance banning smoking in nearly all outdoor dining areas in Beverly Hills will go into effect Monday in an attempt to provide a healthier environment and cleaner air for diners and pedestrians.
The smoking ban applies to all outdoor dining areas, including restaurants located in hotels and within five feet of an open-air dining area. However, hotels with pool areas where food or beverages are served can designate up to 25 percent of the deck area for smoking.
"Offering a fresh-air dining experience to our residents, visitors and neighbors throughout the Westside is one way that Beverly Hills can make a difference in the environment and for all who come to dine or shop in Beverly Hills," said Councilman Barry Brucker, who introduced the ordinance.
The ordinance imposes a $100 fine for the first offense, a $200 fine for a second offense within one year and a $500 for fine for each additional violation within one year, according to Daniel E. Cartagena, a project manager with Beverly Hills' Department of Economic Development.
Cartagena said he expected few tickets would be issued, with diners or staff pointing out the smoking ban, prompting smokers to stop, as has occurred in other cities with similar smoking bans.
"This is significantly self-policing," Cartagena said.
The ordinance was opposed by the Beverly Hills Restaurant Association, whose members say it could prompt smokers to eat at restaurants in nearby Los Angeles or West Hollywood where smoking is allowed outdoors, which would hurt their businesses and cost Beverly Hills sales tax revenue.
Brucker said the ban on smoking in outdoor dining areas will boost business in Beverly Hills restaurants.
"I know several families who intend to dine out more often because they are guaranteed that any restaurant they go to in Beverly Hills will be smoke- free," Brucker said.
Smoking is banned inside restaurants under state law. Burbank, Calabasas and Santa Monica have adopted outdoor smoking bans.
The council gave final approval to the ordinance June 20, but agreed with the restaurant association to delay implementation of the measure until Oct. 1 so it would not affect the throngs of European tourists expected that were expected this summer.
Beverly Hills has hired the Weber Shandwick public relations firm to conduct a marketing campaign it has dubbed "9O210" to increase the public's awareness of the campaign. The campaign includes window signs, street-pole banners, posters and newspaper advertisements.
The ordinance stemmed from a suggestion by Brucker last September following complaints from the public, Cartagena said.
A two-member ad hoc committee consisting of Brucker and Councilwoman Linda Briskman met five times to study the issue and make recommendations to city staff members, who developed a proposal that was revised following an April 26 council study session and meetings between the committee, Chamber of Commerce and Beverly Hills Restaurant Association, Cartagena said.
- 3 dead in fiery crash in San Bernardino area
- LA inmate escapes hours after sentencing
- Big Bear Lake's pirate ship afloat again
- OC high-speed chase ends in police shooting
- SXSW continues in Austin after crash kills 2
- NYC explosion kills 8; rescuers resume search
- abcnews: Dog's healing effects on 2 wounded vets
- Bail refused for ex-NFL player Darren Sharper
- Amazon hikes Prime membership to $99 per year
- OTRC: Tina Fey talks 'Mean Girls' reunion rumors