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Smoking ban advances

Matthew Artz
Thursday October 10, 2002

City Council took its first step Tuesday to ban smoking within 20 feet of any doorway or air intake vent on public buildings. Council unanimously passed the first reading of the anti-smoking ordinance. 

The measure requires owners of office buildings and shops to put up signs telling smokers not to light up outside their premises. Any smoker found to violate the ordinance would be subject to a $100 fine. 

Proponents say that workers are often exposed to dangerous secondhand smoke from coworkers who smoke outside their workplace. 

Under the pending ordinance, a smoker would still be allowed to walk past a public building with a lit cigarette but could not stop and smoke near a doorway. 

Several Bay Area cities have adopted similar ordinances. 

A second council vote is scheduled for Oct. 15. If the measure is passed then, the ordinance will take effect Nov. 14.