Posted on 19-01-01 10:32 AM Reply
SMOKING RESTRICTIONS ON ODESSA CITY COUNCIL AGENDA
Starting January 23, 2001 (TUESDAY) the Odessa City Council will be holding public hearings on a purposed ordinance regarding smoking restrictions in RESTAURANTS and other public buildings. Mr. Jim Butler, Mr. Larry Johnson, and Mr. Melvin Warren have submitted petitions and request that the City Council adopt regulations that would require a smoke-free environment for all restaurants and public buildings to protect the public from secondhand smoke. The ordinance would prohibit smoking in all restaurants and public buildings. It would require the owners to post the necessary sign. It would allow for exceptions for designated smoking areas that complied with certain requirements such as providing air purification systems or separate functional ventilation systems or physical barrier systems that would prevent secondhand smoke from drifting into no smoking areas. It would also allow for establishments to declare themselves as total smoking establishments if sufficient notice was provided at all entrances to warn the public of such condition.
The Odessa City Council has chosen to hold a series of public hearings (5) to receive input from citizens before making any decisions as to whether or not an ordinance on this should be implemented.
This purposed ordinance would be very damaging to the restaurant industry in Odessa. This is particularly true, as the Midland City Council has no such plans to follow this course of action. Odessa restaurants cannot afford the loss of sales or the expense of new equipment, and the city of Odessa can ill afford the loss in sales tax revenue. Over and over throughout the state of Texas this issue has arisen and the Texas Restaurant Association has strongly opposed and fights against measures, like smoking bans, which are not in the best interest of the restaurant industry.
We must work together as members and non-members of the PBRA to see that this measure does not pass. I am asking all restaurateurs to contact every Odessa City Council member to voice your opposition to this purposed ordinance. We must also make a strong showing at all five city council meetings to show our opposition. We will be sending out further notices as each meeting date arrives. I have contacted the state office and they are forwarding their considerable economic data as to the negative effects that smoking ordinances cause to communities. I am confident that we can make this happen, but we must work the political process.
The first public hearing on this matter will take place during the Council Meeting at Floyd Gwin Auditorium, 10th St. and W. County Road. Please attend this most important first meeting. As always please do not hesitate to contact me or any other member of the board if we can help you in any way. I can be reached at 915-689-7706 Cell 915-349-0200 E-Mail [email protected]
The Odessa City Council Members
Mayor Bill Hext
District 1 Bill Cleaver
District 2 Jim Morris
District 3 Larry Melton
District 4 Dr. Bob Slider
District 5 Berta Calzada
They can be reached at (915) 335-4888 or e-mail at [email protected]