June 22, 2021 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

City’s Smoking Bans Expands:

The Santa Monica City Council extended a non-smoking ban for multi-unit residential complexes to include “common areas” within 25 feet from any door, window, or vent. Common areas now incorporate decks, patios, and private-use porches.

The council restricted smoking of common areas of multi-unit properties last year, only to increase the ordinance at the July 27 meeting.

Owners must designate which units in a building are either smoking or non-smoking. This ordinance also requires owners to disclose the status to prospective renters or buyers before tenancy.

Mayor Bobby Shiver rejected the ordinance for not having penalties for smoking violations. Shriver was the only member to vote against the ordinance.

“Why your right to engage in putting carcinogens into babies should be protected is beyond me,” Shriver said. “I know I am overstating it to some extent, but the effect on real people’s lives and their ability to move or not move and protect their children is real.”

One snag left over from the original ordinance is that there are no penalties for residents caught smoking except for private civil action from an offended neighbor. Smoking is not technically prohibited at residential properties, according to the staff report.

Some council members worried that posing infractions may lead to evictions, a sentiment that not everyone shared, citing fines as the better alternative to civil actions. Most council members agreed that small claims court was the “less than effective” alternative.

The more stringent ordinance is in response to almost 50 complaints from Santa Monica residents of smoke leaking to other units since the apartment ban was first adopted, the staff report noted.

The City first banned smoking in parks and beaches in 2004, still a controversial subject at the time despite the state law banning smoking in restaurants and bars a full decade prior. In 2006, the council furthered the ban to 20 feet near buildings for public use, farmer’s markets, or bus stops. Both violations include a $250 fine.

In 2008, the ban extended liability to restaurant owners that allow smoking to occur in dining areas. By the next year the council first restricted common areas in multi-unit properties, a decree now deemed too lax.

Council members held off requiring landlords to register tenants based on a survey whether individual units should be non-smoking versus smoking. Members cited the potential for invasion of tenants’ privacy or owners eliminating smoking for profitability. Shriver supported eviction if tenants violated the non-smoking status.

“What we are creating here, is an opening for a lot of strife,” said Council member Gleam Davis. “Since this is self reporting with no enforcement, people don’t have any incentive to enforce accurately.”

Willow Evans, a resident in Santa Monica since 1986, watched her apartment building go from nine smokers out of 19 units, to just one. She pleaded for the council to expand the distance from residences “as far as possible.”

Although the City can stop the “next level of second-hand smoke,” they will not cross the threshold into resident’s homes, said Council member Kevin McKeown.

The council looked to the future where all newly constructed multi-unit properties must be smoke-free, a decision also left to the future. All indoor and outdoor spaces would be restricted from smoking, with the possible option for designated smoking areas.

in News
Related Posts

Two Suspects Arrested in Connection to Downtown Santa Monica Shooting

June 21, 2021

June 21, 2021

Man wounded following Monday evening incident By Sam Catanzaro Two suspects have been arrested in connection to a Monday evening...

Santa Monica Expected to Confirm Contract for New Interim City Manager

June 21, 2021

June 21, 2021

Former City Manager John Jalili expected assume interim post Friday  By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica lawmakers are expected to approve...

Free Lunches Provided to School Aged Children at Virginia Ave Park: Santa Monica Beat – June 21, 2021

June 21, 2021

June 21, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Free Lunches Provided to School Aged Children at Virginia Ave Park...

Santa Monica Aligns Mask Orders with LA County

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

On June 15, Interim City Manager Lane Dilg signed the 37th supplement to align Santa Monica’s local emergency provisions with Los Angeles County...

Former Santa Monica Resident Sentenced to Federal Prison for Embezzling More Than $22 Million from Employer

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

A former executive at a Hollywood-based digital marketing company that represents influencers on Instagram and YouTube was sentenced recently to...

Edify TV: Tourism Returning to Santa Monica?

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

A busy Memorial Day weekend in which Santa Monica hotel occupancy rates reached their highest levels since the pandemic began...

Santa Monica College Cancels Fireworks Show, Main Street Parade Also Off

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

Firework shows in Marina del Rey and Pacific Palisades back this year By Sam Catanzaro Santa Monica College (SMC) has...

Summer Safety Tips When Hiking and Biking Outdoors

June 17, 2021

June 17, 2021

LAFD Captain Erik Scott gives us tips on staying safe while enjoying the mountains this summer. Brought to you by...

Edify TV: Closing Expo Line Bike Path Gap?

June 15, 2021

June 15, 2021

Plans are in the works to close a frustrating gap in the Expo Line Bike Path. Learn more in this...

Markedly Different Reactions to Sheriff’s Plan to Clear Boardwalk Encampments

June 15, 2021

June 15, 2021

Plan to clear Boardwalk by Fourth of July met with applause, condemnation By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex...

Edify TV: Westside Vandalism Suspect Arrested

June 14, 2021

June 14, 2021

A man has been arrested in connection with a series of Westside vandalisms in West L.A., including at a local...

Loved Ones Ashes Stolen From Families Car In Santa Monica: Santa Monica Beat – June 14, 2021

June 14, 2021

June 14, 2021

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * Loved Ones Ashes Stolen From Families Car In Santa Monica *...

LA County Lifeguards Return to Summer Staffing Levels as Heat Wave Rolls Through

June 14, 2021

June 14, 2021

Triple digit temperatures expected for inland LA County this week  By Sam Catanzaro As summer heats up, Los Angeles County...