If you got 'em, don't smoke 'em: City Council approves tougher smoking ban in SA
In a 7-4 vote, San Antonio City Council approved a tougher smoking ban Thursday, joining other major Texas cities to ban indoor smoking.
The ban will go into effect Aug. 19, 2011, despite pleas by opponents that it be put off for up to three years.
Mayor Julian Castro and Council members Mary Alice Cisneros, Ivy Taylor, Phil Cortez, David Medina, Justin Rodriguez and Reed Williams voted for the ordinance.
Voting against were Elisa Chan, Ray Lopez, Jennifer Ramos and John Clamp.
The new ordinance will quality San Antonio as a “smoke-free city” under criteria established by Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights.
Smoking will be prohibited at the San Antonio Zoo, transit stations and under pavilions and in playgrounds at city parks and most outdoor locations.
The ban also ends exemptions for smoking in bars, poolrooms, bingo halls, comedy clubs and restaurants.
The ban will not, however, end smoking in all facilities or outdoor locations in the city. Private clubs and fraternal organizations – such as American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars halls – may still permit smoking.
Smoking will also be allowed along the River Walk the Botanical Gardens and at Main and Alamo Plazas, a compromise with opponents. City staff had recommended no-smoking designations in those areas.
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