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Santa Monica Snuffs Out Patio, Balcony Smoking

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After pushing to end smoking on the Santa Monica pier, the City Council on Tuesday banned "people from lighting up within 25-feet of a door or window in any multi-unit residential building," reports the Santa Monica Daily Press. The action was aimed specifically at those who light up on balconies and patios. The 4-1 move was dissented by Councilman Bobby Shriver, who would have preferred other methods of cessation, including having apartment owners designate certain units as non-smoking. That idea was tabled until November--there's concern that method could scapegoat low-income smokers and encourage landowners to evict them. In November, voters will decide on a renter protection measure which would alleviate eviction concerns. The funny thing about these smoking bans--lighting up is a no-go on the Promenade and at outdoor restaurants--is that for some of them violators can only be punished by being hauled into small-claims court. Fines won't be incurred with this new law, nor are there fees for the ban on smoking in apartment and condo common areas--people have to be sued, and penalties start at $100.
· Council Bans Smoking on Patios, Balconies [SMDP]
· Smoking Bans Advance in Santa Monica, WeHo [Curbed LA]