Hetty Chang, Kristopher Li
Members from the Manhattan Beach City Council were set to vote Tuesday evening on one of the strictest smoking bans the city has ever seen, extending to e-cigarettes and smoking on sidewalks. Hetty Chang reports from Manhattan Beach for the NBC4 News at 6 on Tuesday, June 3, 2014.
Manhattan Beach gave preliminary approval on Tuesday to expand its city-wide smoking ban to include e-cigarettes and all streets, sidewalks and outdoor dining areas.
The Manhattan Beach City Council passed the plan unanimously. It will come up for a second vote on June 17 before it becomes permanent.
The city's current ban is limited to certain public places like beaches and parks and does not include specific language about electronic smoking devices, officials said.
"It follows along the cities of Coronado and Calabasas that have had smoke-free, city-wide bans and with great success," Mayor Pro-tem Wayne Powell said.
Several bar owners along The Strand said they support the proposal, especially since most of them have open windows and patios which they said don't keep the smoke out.
"Even if someone smokes outside, all the windows and doors are open, and there's ocean breezes right here," said Gisele Mannanova, a bartender at Shellback Tavern. "You don't want to ruin that. You want to enjoy your fresh air."
"We all have a right to breathe clean fresh air, and that's why we live here," South Bay resident Nina Steiner said.
But others thought the ban was too far-reaching.
"It is a little bit upsetting honestly," said Elizabeth Askew, who has been smoking for five years. "I come here quite often, and it may affect how much I come here just because I can't go outside and smoke when I want to."
Ronnie Layden, a smoker visiting from New Mexico, left his lunch to smoke on the sidewalk, where smoking may soon be prohibited.
"Where we are sitting right now, I'm right next to a parking lot," he said. "A car just drove by and I'm inhaling exhaust from a car. I don't see how we can regulate everything. I don't understand, it's just too far."