Wheat Ridge considers banning patio smoking

Last night, at a study session of the Wheat Ridge City Council, members considered making significant revisions to the town's smoking ordinance, including banning smoking on outdoor restaurant and bar patios.

"The council provided staff direction to bring the ordinance forward to the regular council meeting," says Heather Geyer, the city's public information officer.

The proposed ordinance would extend the city's current smoking ban to include a number of public spaces, among them bars and "retail food production and marketing establishments." The current ordinance only bans smoking in certain "enclosed, indoor" facilities.

Some restaurants hadn't yet heard of the proposal. But Abrusci's, the Italian restaurant at 3244 Youngfield Street that just opened a second location at 300 Fillmore Street in Cherry Creek, probably wouldn't be affected much. "We don't really get many smokers here on our patio," says owner Nancy Progar. "We don't really have a big enough patio."

State law bans smoking within fifteen feet of an establishment.

Clancy's Irish Pub, at 10117 West 37th Place in Wheat Ridge, wouldn't take as kindly to the change. "I would absolutely pitch a fit if they did that," says Beth Donohue, daughter of owner Robert Wood. "We have had absolutely no problems with the city, but if they're thinking about doing something like that, I would be definitely very much against it."

Geyer says the proposed ordinance could still go through a few changes before it's considered at a full meeting of the Wheat Ridge City Council on an as-yet undetermined date.

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