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Little Rock going smoke free?


Aporkalypse

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Mayor Dailey is pushing hard for it and a recent poll says that 64% in Little Rock support a smoking ban in restaurants, bars, and other public places, 53% strongly support it.

The same has occurred in Fayetteville and I'd be interested in your thoughts on its effect there.

The entire state of Florida has a smoking ban in restaurants and when I visited, I liked it. Dallas has a restaurant but not bar ban and I enjoy going out a lot more.

A big issue will be whether it will negatively affect the downtown LR bars and push people towards NLR more. I really prefer a non-smoking environment but more than half of people at bars on weekends smoke.

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Mayor Dailey is pushing hard for it and a recent poll says that 64% in Little Rock support a smoking ban in restaurants, bars, and other public places, 53% strongly support it.

The same has occurred in Fayetteville and I'd be interested in your thoughts on its effect there.

The entire state of Florida has a smoking ban in restaurants and when I visited, I liked it. Dallas has a restaurant but not bar ban and I enjoy going out a lot more.

A big issue will be whether it will negatively affect the downtown LR bars and push people towards NLR more. I really prefer a non-smoking environment but more than half of people at bars on weekends smoke.

I'm all for it. I really don't think it will make a huge difference in the bar scene, in my experience most of the people smoking only smoke after a few drinks and then just for something to do. I'm sure a few will venture to other places, but then again more people (like me) that tend not to go out as much will begin to frequent the scenes more often. I truly cannot enjoy myself when sucking a lung full of smoke every other breath.

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You think this would effect your restaurant sales?

I think it's a great idea, and I'm waiting for the day when more cities up here announce smoking bans.

I think the interesting thing will be whether it will push people to choose the NLR restaurants instead of the LR ones because they would be able to smoke. Amongst chains at least, almost everything that's on one side of the River is on the other. I also wonder if it would sway new chains to go to one side vs the other.

I don't think it will ultimately affect restaurant volume in the county as a whole, but I bet we see a lot more outdoor seating in Little Rock in the spring if it passes (which I think it will).

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I think it could be a good thing for the city. Here in Fayetteville everyone made a big deal about how everyone would stop eating out in Fayetteville and simply go to Springdale or Benton County to eat because it was so close. I know I've heard that argument with Little Rock and North Little Rock. It really hasn't hurt restaurants. Turns out now people from further away are willing to eat in Fayetteville because it's smokefree now. They intereviewed one person a while back ago when they were talking about the one year anniversary and he was from Tulsa. He said he was willing to drive that far to eat in a smokefree area. I certainly doutb he actually comes very frequently but I think people underestimated that effect. I'm not trying to pick on smokers but I simply think it's only a matter of time before smokefree areas become much more common. In today's lawsuit happy society, how long before a waiter or waitress sues because they had to work the smoking section? I won't absolutely say it won't hurt any restaurant. But I think it would help overall to the entire city. They did a study here in Fayetteville a year after the ban and they determined business actually went up overall in Fayetteville's restaurants. And as I said before it's not too far away to go eat at some nice places up in Benton County. So I would imagine it being the same for Little Rock worrying about losing all their business to North Little Rock.

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Pine Bluff had one passed not to long ago, I think.

I wonder the effects it's had on it's restaurant sales.

Yeah I can't say I've heard too much about it even though I have family down there. I know they didn't even get enough support to push it to a public vote. But I don't know if I'd use them as much of a model though. Pine Bluff unfortunately isn't a place people think to go eat out at. Like I said before I think Fayetteville is a very good analogy. Both Fayetteville and Little Rock also have areas to the north of them that also offer some competition. And both are or were worried that a lot of people will simply head north if a smoking ban is passed.

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Yeah I can't say I've heard too much about it even though I have family down there. I know they didn't even get enough support to push it to a public vote. But I don't know if I'd use them as much of a model though. Pine Bluff unfortunately isn't a place people think to go eat out at. Like I said before I think Fayetteville is a very good analogy. Both Fayetteville and Little Rock also have areas to the north of them that also offer some competition. And both are or were worried that a lot of people will simply head north if a smoking ban is passed.

Plus, both Fayetteville and LR have to take the bar element into consideration. I agree, it's a better analogy.

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I see Matt writing away. He probably wasn't necessarily referring to Pine Bluff as an analogy, but just as what effect it has had there. I admit I'd like to know too but haven't really heard too much about it. I guess I could ask some family members if they've heard anything about it.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Little Rock may not have to worry about 'lost' business after all. Looks like Governor Huckabee is looking to push for a statewide smoking ban in the workplace next year sometime. Not sure how reaction would be to that statewide. I wonder if it's easier to have individual cities for it in or to actually go for the statewide way to go.

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Little Rock may not have to worry about 'lost' business after all. Looks like Governor Huckabee is looking to push for a statewide smoking ban in the workplace next year sometime. Not sure how reaction would be to that statewide. I wonder if it's easier to have individual cities for it in or to actually go for the statewide way to go.

Florida went statewide, BTW.

If it's local only, I think the problem is that only a handful of communities would support it. There's a whole lot of Arkansas where half the adult population smokes and these communities would never consider it.

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Florida went statewide, BTW.

If it's local only, I think the problem is that only a handful of communities would support it. There's a whole lot of Arkansas where half the adult population smokes and these communities would never consider it.

Yeah I've been to areas where it feels like over half the population smokes. Yes there's certainly some areas that would absolutely never consider it. Making it statewide is a nice idea, but I'm not sure if it will be easier to pass that way or not.

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  • 1 year later...

Did going smoke free hurt Little Rock restaurants? According to Gusano's Pizzaria in the River market the answer is no. Sales for this past year were up 30%. Gusano's says its weekend business has shifted from Friday night bar-goers to families on Saturdays and Sundays.

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Does anyone know if any area has been hurting from this law? I really don't think it's hurt NWA but there's so many people moving in sometimes it's hard to tell because new people can make up for others that don't go back. Although I imagine the Little Rock area would have a somewhat similar situation.

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