Skip to comments.Boston - Outdoor bistros say stringent smoking rules will kill biz
Posted on 06/02/2009 11:35:55 AM PDT by swarthyguy
Hub bar and restaurant owners are burning up over the citys sudden crackdown on puffing patrons on rooftop decks or in sidewalk cafes as part of the citys tough new workplace smoking rules.
We used to have a patio full of people, smokers and others who dont smoke but are socializing with them, said George Lewis, owner of The Foundation Lounge at the Hotel Commonwealth in Kenmore Square. Now its empty.
Lewis is among a group of tavern owners considering challenging the new smoking restriction in court. They fear the ban, coupled with an increased meals tax, will scare away customers at a time when profits are already suffering due to the economy.
Im afraid were going to lose business, said Tony Castagnozzi of the Rattlesnake Bar and Grill on Bolyston Street. People will say, Screw it. Well go out of town to a place where we can have dinner and a cigar outside. It just makes it tougher and tougher to do business in the city.
Last month, city inspectors began visiting the 250 or so bars and cafes with decks and patios, handing out warning letters and putting proprietors on notice that they face costly fines - $200 for a first offense, $700 for a second and $1,000 for a third - if customers are caught smoking in any adjacent outdoor area served by staff.
Boston Public Health Commission spokeswoman Ann Scales said after the educational outreach ends in the coming weeks, the city will begin enforcing the smoking ban in earnest by handing out violations. We dont pass regulations that we dont enforce, she said, adding that chronic violations could affect a bars liquor license.
Angry publicans say they were caught off guard by the measure, which got little attention in December when the city, which banned smoking inside restaurants and bars in 2003, enacted some of the toughest smoking restrictions in the country.
The outdoor-workplace smoking ban was tucked into the new regulations, which included a proposal to extinguish cigar bars that made national headlines. The issue sparked a fight from smoking bars that led to a 10-year reprieve.
But bar owners did little to protest the outdoor ban and are now scrambling to deal with what Castagnozzi calls a manager and doormans nightmare. On some nights, as many as 50 people stand in line waiting to get upstairs to the Rattlesnakes popular roof deck. Now anyone wanting to smoke will have to go back down the line and outside to smoke. When they come back, people will be like, Who are you? he said.
In fact, there ought to be a prohibition on smoking within say, 20 feet or so of an entrance to a commerical establishment.
Boston MA - The Spirit of Liberty.
Breathe that pure air!
The Boston mayor just blocked the Tall Ships’ crews and passengers from coming into the city, too. Boston is dead as a viable city, killed by its elected officials...
And the City of Boston does not collect tax revenue from business that dried up due to NO CUSTOMERS.
A self-correcting issue.
I really enjoyed the whining of the bar owners in this piece.
A little late, methinks.
And I’m ignorant about the details of why the TallShips are being denied docking in the harbor. Something quite absurd, I assume.
Hahahah.. well while I’m no smoker and have no issues honestly with indoor smoking bans in public places, outdoor ones are comical, especially places where one can choose to be. But its Boston, it became a parody of itself decades ago.
The denialists’ days are over, stories such as these now belong in News of the Weird...
>>indoor smoking bans
A moot point, but I was one of those in favor of letting individual establishments and proprietors decide.
But, then again, that seemed a foreign concept to most.
That’s what I get for being a naturalized citizen.
||"I simply turn on the Golden EIB Microphone and share my honest passions and beliefs with people.
And they're free to go elsewhere.
They're free to ignore; they're free to believe; they're free to be entertained, I don't care.
They're free to do whatever they want.
But a lot of people aren't free to smoke cigarettes where they want;
they're not free to drink where they want;
they're not free to eat the kind of food they want to eat;
they're not free to eat trans fats;
they're not free to drive certain places.
Pretty soon we're going to be told what kind of cars we have to drive.
I can't cause that.
I can't restrict anybody's freedom.
We've elected a guy who can, does, and wants to, all under the guise of saving us.
So I appreciate the effort, and I appreciate somewhat losing my temper here.
But don't compare me ever to an authoritarian who thinks so little of people that without him they can barely breathe on their own.
Don't ever do that."
LEARN IT, LOVE IT, LIVE IT!
If one cannot understand Rush's words above, then one does not truly understand FREEDOM!
This is TOTALLY OUT OF CONTROL!
>>Boston is dead as a viable city
it is a pale shadow of its former, rather more freewheeling self.
But Mumbles is loved in the city.
Personally, unless I have to, I avoid the city.
Which is pretty weird for someone who spent a lot of time prowling its streets and nightlife back in the 20th Century!
How about we turn Venus into a designated smoking area?
Not OUT of control, IN KONTROL, Komrad.
Kill a baby in the womb, you have that choice, but don’t dare allow smoking outdoors or have a cigar bar in your state. TOTAL LUNACY!
TOTALLY OUT OF CONTROL - TOTALLY!
He was the only one there. He was bothering no one and no one bothered him...that is, until the Starbucks girl came outside to bark that State law mandated that he couldn't smoke outside even though he was bothering exactly no one.
Damn nanny-state socialists.
They’re not socialists, they’re CONTROL FREAKS.
I swear, smoking a cigarette with joy and pleasure REALLY REALLY irritates the NICONANNYNAZIS.
They want smokers to shuffle outside subserviently, avoiding eye contact, and acting and looking apologetic and bashful.
Remind ya of any other group, particularly in the past....
Which State is you in?
But the mayor said he could not take a chance on the money coming in, as he did years ago. After the Tall Ships event in 2000, the state failed to reimburse the city for the public expenses of putting on the spectacle, which typically boosts state tax revenue through meals and sales taxes but does little for the city coffers. This time, Menino has asked the Sail Boston to provide the money for public safety up front.
The Mayor is right on this. Cadillac Deval needs to put up the cash...
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