After two hours of debate, the Pasadena City Council failed to break a deadlock Tuesday night on a proposal to ban smoking in the city's more than 700 restaurants and bars, and will reconsider the matter next week.
The proposal, submitted by the Health Department, would extend the city's ban on smoking in the workplace to all enclosed restaurants, including bars. It goes further than the law passed last month in Los Angeles, which exempts bars and bar areas of restaurants.
Councilman Chris Holden expressed support for a ban on smoking in restaurants, but refused to vote for the plan unless it was amended to exempt bars. He said he was worried that the ban would seriously hurt business at local pool halls and night clubs.
But the three council members who favored the proposal would not vote for the bar exemption, and the council was stuck 3-3. Mayor Rick Cole and council members Kathryn Nack and Bill Crowfoot supported the complete ban. Councilmen Isaac Richard and William Paparian were opposed. Councilman William E. Thomson Jr. was absent.
The Pasadena Restaurant Assn. did not take a position, but it has voiced support in the past for a statewide ban and against Pasadena taking individual action.