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Smoking Bans
And Businesses

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Smoking Ban Links

Nicotine Nannies claim smoking bans are good for business. But if that were the case, could this list exist, and could it be so huge? (Please note, this is only a small sample of articles available on the subject.)

This page uses blogging software to make it easier to search. Each post contains excerpts from the original article. Our comments are in italics. More detailed information is available here.

Archive for March, 2008

Gambling revenues decline after smoking ban

Monday, March 31st, 2008

St. Paul, Minn. — The state Gambling Control Board said pull-tab sales in bars were down nearly 13 percent during the fourth quarter of 2007. That’s a $40 million decrease in receipts from the same period the
previous year.

Source: Minnesota Public Radio. Link

A full house? Not since smoking ban, says Gala

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

The number of visitors to a Hounslow bingo hall are down since last year’s smoking ban, bingo bosses have said.

Gala Bingo, in Staines Road, attributed losses of 30 per cent to the legislation banning smoking in public places, which came in to effect in July last year.

Surrender Kumar who has worked at the hall for 18 years, said: “The drop in the number of customers has forced us to stop trading on Sunday afternoons.”

The period 2004 to 2005 {before the ban} showed a 24 per cent increase in trade.

Helen Spicer, from Mintel, said: “The smoking ban has meant that many players simply stay away from bingo halls, or if they do go, they head out during the intervals for a quick cigarette.

“If the industry doesn’t come up with new ideas, British bingo could soon be a thing of the past.”

Source: Richmond Twickenham Times. Link

Another pub chain falls victim to the ban on smoking

Saturday, March 29th, 2008

The Laurel Pub Company, owner of some of the country’s best-known high street bar brands, has collapsed. The development comes as breweries and pub chains blame the ban for encouraging smokers to stay at home rather than visit their local.

Some 388 pubs were placed in administration this week, though a rescue deal orchestrated by the company’s colourful owner, the Iranian property investor Robert Tchenguiz, will ensure the brands survive.

According to the British Beer and Pubs Association, the smoking ban in England and Wales combined with the credit crunch and a decline in drinking are responsible for closing pubs at their fastest rate in history – 27 a week.

The Massive Pub Company, which owned the Tup chain of pubs in London and the Sports Café chain, have both been placed in administration, while Regents Inns, owner of the Walkabout chain, has been forced into the sale of 94 bars.

In the past two months, Marstons, Greene King, Fuller, Smith and Turner and Wetherspoons have all announced their profits have been hit by the ban on smoking in public.

The Government outlawed lighting up in restaurants, bars and other public spaces on 1 July last year.

Publicans installed awnings and patio heaters to encourage smokers to go to the pub. However, commentators say that has failed to prevent the ban hitting the £15bn-a-year industry, with traditional “wet-led” local pubs the worst affected. Mark Brumby, a drinks analyst with Blue Oar Securities, estimated that the smoking ban had cost between 3 and 4 per cent of sales – or about £600m.

The collapse of the Laurel Pub Chain on Thursday indicated the impact of the smoking ban was spreading to suburban locations.

According to The Publican, the remaining 90 loss-making pubs in administration – five Slug and Lettuce, 11 Ha Ha, 40 Yates and seven Litten Tree – owe £8.6m in unpaid rent.

The pubs have now, in effect, been cut adrift from Mr Tchenguiz’s empire, with the expected loss of about 800 jobs.

Source: The Independent. Link

Dutch health minister says marijuana to be exempt from July 1 smoking ban

Thursday, March 27th, 2008

{In Europe many marijuana smokers mix their pot with tobacco. In a perfect example of the absurdity of SHS hysteria, people who smoke pure cannabis can stay in the shop, but those who mix it with a bit of tobacco have to do it in a special area where staff is prohibited from working.}

Dutch health minister Ab Klink said visitors to coffee shops will be free to smoke marijuana as long as it is not mixed with tobacco, after a smoking ban affecting all restaurants and bars goes into effect on July 1.

Coffee shops also will be allowed to set up separate smoking areas for customers who want to smoke marijuana and tobacco, although staff will not be allowed to serve or do other work inside those areas.

Source: Forbes.com Link

East St. Louis casino blames smoke ban for revenue decline

Tuesday, March 25th, 2008

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) – The Casino Queen in East St. Louis is reporting that its business is down, and executives are blaming Illinois’ smoking ban.

Initially, the $92 million new casino,which opened last summer, saw revenues increase from the smaller boat,but business has declined since January 1st when the state’s ban on smoking in public places took effect.

Casino manager tom Monaghan says the drop in business has been devastating. He says because of the smoking ban, he fears gamblers are going to new nearby competing casinos across the river in Missouri, where gamblers still can smoke.

Source: WTHITV. Link

Mark W. Benjamin: Statewide smoking ban gave no thought to mental health

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

Theater night protests are a challenge to a mean-spiritied, shortsighted law.

Your March 16 editorial panned our Theater Night performances in bars as “a clever but wrongheaded protest” against Minnesota’s smoking ban and sniffed that this is a medical, not economic, issue. We disagree. Your editorial focused on physical health and made no room for mental health.

After the smoking ban took effect Oct. 1, many small bars, Legions and VFW posts experienced a precipitous drop in income. Bar owners laid off waitresses they had known since childhood. Bartenders quit school after losing hours and tips. Former customers retreated to ice shacks
on frozen Minnesota lakes to drink and smoke alone.

Public health is more than physical health — clean air and pink lungs. It is also about mental health — keeping company and green wallets. People who drink and smoke alone, who lose their jobs and businesses do not live as well or as long. They need help, not ridicule. These people are socially isolated and financially stressed. Social and financial health deserves to be part of our public health

Public health pundits grumble that Theater Night disrespects the law and violates its “spirit.” But this law is mean-spirited and disrespects our veterans and small-bar owners. It makes no accommodation for them.

Last spring, the veterans and small bar owners worried they would lose customers. The Legislature assured them they would see more customers when their businesses were smoke-free, a rosy prediction that turned out wrong.

Theater Night is a blessed respite from the economic desert in which some of our small bars were dying. We now have time to address the mistaken assumptions of last spring. We recommend two healthy accommodations for our veterans and small bar owners.

First, our veterans deserve an exemption. They performed valiantly overseas and continue to perform for their communities through charitable giving. But their revenues dried up after Oct. 1. Granting them an exemption will restore those revenues and their charitable giving.

Second, the smoking ban lets scientists study the effects of tobacco smoke as long as their laboratories are ventilated at the rate of 60 cubic feet of air per minute per person. This is a safety standard that our small bar owners are willing to adopt, even at great cost. Granting such an exemption will give them a chance of survival.

Some may be upset by our approach. But all we ask is to be heard on the subject of mental health as an integral component of public health. Until that day, our show will go on.

Source: Start Tribune. Link

Worthing pub blames smoking ban for closure

Wednesday, March 19th, 2008

A pub is closing down on Easter Monday due to falling trade following the ban on smoking.

The bar, in Chapel Road, is one of several Yates ear-marked for closure around the country.

Owners, the Laurel Pub Company, which owns more than 400 pubs and restaurants nationwide, said: “We are closing due to the affect of the smoking ban and difficult trading conditions.”

The company says it will be helping the 12 staff to find new jobs. The spokesman said: “Where possible we try to re-locate our staff.”

The Argus has reported landlords reporting takings dropping by £1,000 a week in some pubs. Littlehampton appears to have been one of the worst hit areas with five pubs being forced to shut.

A survey by the Campaign for Real Ale revealed 56 pubs a month are closing across the country.

Source: The Argus. Link

Restaurant owner blames smoking ban in part for closing

Tuesday, March 18th, 2008

LEBANON — Wild Bill’s New American Grille, 20 E. Silver St., has closed its doors permanently, and its owner says the smoking ban played a significant role in the closing.

“We’re heartbroken about it,” said Bill Schroeder, who operated the restaurant with his wife Gayle.

The Schroeders first closed their restaurant briefly in February 2007, blaming a one-two punch of a mandated hike in minimum wage and the smoking ban that took effect in January 2007 and which, Schroeder said, cost him about 30 percent of his business. But based on e-mails and pleas from customers, the couple reopened the restaurant in the spring.

After the smoking ban took effect, “We never saw a lot of our smokers again,” he said. “I expected families to pick up after the ban, but I didn’t see too much of that.”

The restaurant closed March 1.

Source: Dayton Daily News. Link

Study finds that smoking ban had no effect on revenues

Friday, March 14th, 2008

This is an excellent example of how anti-smokers lie with numbers. The first paragraph of the article says:

A smoking ban had no effect on restaurant and bar revenue, according to an analysis of tax records by the Bismarck Tobacco Free Coalition.

Note the wording – no effect on restaurants and bars. But what did they really measure?

Individual businesses were not studied, rather full-service restaurants only were placed in groups of five based on revenue. The five businesses that produced the most revenue were group one, and so-forth, to the five lowest revenue-generating restaurants.

Full service restaurants are often already non-smoking, and few cater to a smoking clientèle. They are usually not affected, or affected minimally, by smoking bans.

The study claims to have studied bars and restaurants, but in reality only looked at full service restaurants. The completely ignored bars, dinners, pool halls, bingo halls, clubs, – in other words, they intentionally left out the businesses that are harmed by bans.

And then they lie about it, saying they included bars, and implying that all types of of restaurants were studied.

This is typical nicotine nanny behavior. I have yet to see an honest study from their ilk.

Source: Bismark Tribune. Link

Smoking ban hits pub games league

Thursday, March 6th, 2008

Halifax Ladies Friendly League used to have 16 pubs and clubs but has started the new season with only six teams.

The smoking ban has been blamed for its dwindling popularity, as well as 10 pubs closing in Calderdale this year already.

“Numbers started dwindling three or four years ago and the smoking ban has now killed it,” said Mrs Kershaw, a smoker, of Pye Nest Gardens, Halifax. “I would say about 75 per cent of players smoke.”

Source: Halifax Courier. Link

Final curtain for smoke ban club

Monday, March 3rd, 2008

Nestled in the heart of a North Shore residential area, the club has been a local for hundreds of members for nearly three decades.

But a nationwide smoking ban, imposed by the Government last July, has stubbed out the social club’s fortunes, forcing owner David Hall to close its often-crowded concert room.

“The smoking ban is killing clubland, not only in Blackpool, but across the UK.

“I remember a time – not that long ago – when this place was packed every night.

“Now we are lucky if we get a handful of people.

“The smoking ban has killed this place.
The Government should have thought more about the laws before they brought them in.”

His wife Barbara, 68, said: “There’s always been a real community spirit about the place. We have met so many of our friends here, friends for life.”

Customer Carol Ramsden added her best wishes to the owner. She said: “It’s such a shame for everyone but the smoking ban is to blame.

Source: Blackpool Gazette. Link


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