Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Delay put on smoldering smoking issue as some councilman have second thoughts

The Arlington City Council, which was set to consider tougher smoking restrictions, instead decided Tuesday afternoon to delay a vote on the city’s smoking ordinance.
Councilman Robert Rivera, who initially led the move toward a total smoking ban at the Ballpark and other parts of Arlington, explained he’s had a change of heart on the matter after speaking with some business owners.
 “The last thing we should be doing is forcing someone to close up shop,” Rivera said. “These businesses employ our residents. One billiard hall owner told me smokers are the backbone of their industry.”
The revisions to the smoking ordinance include restrictions on smoking in bowling alleys, night clubs, sexually oriented businesses and parks, with the exception of golf courses. The changes would also impact the Rangers Ballpark, where smoking restrictions were recently modified in response to concerns.
Smoking is now banned on the balconies of the Cuervo Club and smoking areas on the upper concourse have been reduced and moved farther from seating and concessions.
Indoor smoking is already banned at the Cowboys Stadium.
Arlington’s smoking ordinance was last revised in 2008.
The council will consider the revised ordinance at the next scheduled meeting on October 30.
(City release M. Rice)

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