A proposed measure, which would have banned all residential smoking in apartments and condos in Santa Monica, CA, was tabled by city officials who worried about how the ban would impact medical marijuana patients.
The City Council voted 4-2 to not pass the ban.
Under the proposed ban, medical marijuana patients, cigarette smokers, hookah enthusiasts, and cigar aficionados would have been forced to disclose that they wanted to smoke and the reasons for smoking to their landlords. The landlords would then be able to decide whether they wanted to make their unit into a designated smoking unit.
City officials were concerned that medical marijuana patients would be forced to disclose their private medical information to their landlords. Marijuana users and smoking advocates felt that being forced to disclose such information would violate their civil and property rights. The City Council sympathized with the concerns of the smokers and sided with them, causing the ban to fail.
Supporters of the ban measure argued that they needed protection from their smoking neighbors and second hand smoke.
While the proposed ban may seem extreme, Santa Monica is not the only city in California to have considered banning smoking in residential areas. Pasadena, South Pasadena, Burbank, Huntington Park, Baldwin Park, and Compton have all enacted bans on smoking in apartments and condos that will go into effect in the next two years.
Despite the vote, the measure is not necessarily dead. City staff will be creating a reworked version of the ordinance. It has not been decided when the panel will take up the issue again.