Light Up Somewhere Else!
Today, City Council passed a law banning smoking throughout the city. In a bill sponsored by Councilman Michael Nutter, the smoking ban affects most public restaurants, businesses, and public spaces in Philadelphia. The only exemption is small neighborhood taverns and cafés, whose money comes in most with alcohol sales. Councilman Brian O’Neil presented his opinion before the vote, opposing the bill because it didn’t ban smoking for everyone. He equated the bill with “prohibiting smoking in first class.” The ban passed by a vote of 9-6. According to KYW 1060, the mayor, who had previously indicated he had problems with the proposed legislation, did not immediately indicate whther he would sign the new bill into law. Today is the last session before City Council goes on summer break and will not return until the fall.
Edit: Reading more on the ban, another exemption for the ban is tobacco shops, and all the exemptions would be permanent. If Mayor Street approves the bill, it’ll go into effect January 2007. Councilman Jim Kenney said, “I’ve had people actually out in bars and restaurants who are smokers, who said to me, ‘I wish you’d pass it so I’d smoke less or I’d quit.'”