Against Smoking Ban

RECEIVED Tue., April 26, 2005

Dear Editor,
    I am writing in opposition to the smoking ban initiative on the May 7 ballot. Austin already has a smoking ban that protects children and nonsmokers alike while giving informed adults the freedom to choose.
    Right now, our current smoking ordinance mandates:
    1) Of 46,000 businesses in Austin, more than 99% are smoke free.
    2) No smoking is allowed anywhere children under 18 are present.
    3) More than 2,000 restaurants are smoke-free. Only six allow smoking.
    4) More than 400 bars are smoke-free. Only 200 allow smoking.
    5) More than 150 live music venues are smoke-free. Only 63 allow smoking.
    6) Only 211 businesses and their employees have chosen to allow smoking in Austin.
    If this ordinance is enacted, live music venues in Austin will suffer and some will close down. The current ordinance has already caused the Filling Station to close down and caused Katz's to file bankruptcy. These will not be the deep pockets places owned by out of town corporations. They will be the locally owned businesses run by your friends and neighbors.
    Please help save local venues and local jobs. On May 7, please vote no on the smoking ban and help keep Austin the live music capital of the world.
Lisa Spilsbury
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