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News Summary

Alexandria considers unique smoking ban- through zoning

Publication Date: 2007-03-03
  • Author:AP
  • Publication:examiner.com

Alexandria officials, who have been frustrated by the lack of a statewide restaurant smoking ban, have come up with a new, creative plan to stop people from lighting up inside the establishments.

The city, located just outside the nation's capital, would use its own zoning authority to create a local ban. For example, the city would require a bar or restaurant to be smoke-free to get a permit. Restaurants with permits would have to agree to go smoke-free in three months or risk future restrictions or even closure.

If Alexandria succeeds, it would become the first locality in the state to bar restaurant smoking. Other jurisdictions have been unable to bar smoking because local governments in the state do not have the authority to create outright smoking bans in restaurants and bars.