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Brea : Study Session Scheduled on Move to Cut Smoking

A ordinance that would prohibit smoking in cinemas, some restaurants and other public areas but that would give leeway to employers and small restaurant owners will be discussed by City Council members this week.

Before a public hearing Tuesday on the city’s $29-million budget, council members will hold a study session to discuss the draft ordinance, which would ban smoking in the city’s public meeting rooms, theaters, auditoriums, public restrooms and indoor service lines.

Restaurants such as small cafes and sandwich shops that seat fewer than 50 people would be exempt from a no-smoking policy if council members adopt the draft ordinance. Larger restaurants would be required to designate at least a quarter of the area as nonsmoking.

The proposed ordinance would require employers to adopt an office policy prohibiting smoking in employer conference and meeting rooms, classrooms, auditoriums, restrooms, medical facilities, hallways and elevators along with at least half of cafeterias, lunchrooms and employee lounges.

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Council members will discuss what to do if workplaces are large rooms without partitions or small offices. The draft does not specify whether smoking in the workplace should be banned altogether if no agreement is reached. As written, “it is questionable as to whether this section requires employers to ultimately prohibit smoking if no agreement can be reached,” Deputy City Atty. D. Craig Fox said in a memo.

Whether to allow smoking in the Brea Mall also will be discussed by the council during the study session, scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. at the Civic Cultural Center, 1 Civic Center Circle.


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