L.A. Times reported that some city council members are supportive of a smoke-free outdoor dining ordinance. The city has already worked to remove secondhand smoke from parks, farmer's markets, and city beaches. The new ordinance would prohibit smoking within 10 feet of outdoor dining areas and 40 feet from food carts, food kiosks, and the like. The City Council champions are Greig Smith and Dennis Zine.
Per the usual in debates about smoke-free workplaces, a Big Tobacco sponsored organization is fighting the regulations. The policy could go to the full city council as early as next month.
Unfortunately for Wisconsin, we are not allowed to take action on the local level to make our outdoor dining areas smoke-free. Big Tobacco used a front group to ensure that patrons and workers will not have the right to be protected from secondhand smoke. Hopefully in the future, the restrictions at the state-level can be repealed and local city councils, village boards, and county supervisors will take up the issue of smoke-free outdoor dining.