An ordinance amending Washington’s new smoke-free air act was unanimously approved Monday night by the city council.
There were no objections to the changes in the ordinance that takes effect April 15.
The law prohibits smoking inside all businesses, workplaces and private clubs. The law does not prohibit smoking in private residences unless they are used as a childcare, adult daycare or health care facility. It does allow a hotel or motel to designate 20 percent of rooms for smoking, but only until Jan. 22, 2014, when that clause of the ordinance will be reviewed. The act also exempts hookah lounges until Jan. 22, 2014, when that provision also will be reviewed.
One change approved Monday night removes a pipe factory from the regulations with certain conditions.
It allows the smoking of a pipe manufactured on premises for demonstration purposes in an area used only for that purpose. Smoke from the specified area may not infiltrate other parts of the building and the factory may not have common walls with any other building.
The provision requires a pipe factory to provide quarterly reports to demonstrate that the business derives 90 percent of its gross revenue from the sales of pipes.
The change was made to accommodate the Missouri Meerschaum corn cob pipe factory, which has been in business 144 years.
The new ordinance also changed the distance smokers must be from the “main entrance” or ventilating system of a business or workplace, from 20 feet to 10 feet, and eliminated the restriction preventing smoking near windows.
Several members of the Breathe Easy Washington group which lobbied for the law attended Monday’s meeting but did not address the council on the changes.