Friday, October 15, 2010

South Dakota American Cancer Society disputes the fact that 417 MN bars & restaurants closed since smoking bans were enacted


Actually their dispute seems to be that the list of 417 closings includes 26 Starbucks that closed in and around the Twin Cities after the statewide ban was enacted. Well to set the record straight, many of the Starbucks in MN went smoke-free voluntarily before the statewide smoking ban. Logically then, much of their success was that they (and a couple other non-smoking establishments) had cornered the small smoke-free niche market, but once every other establishment was forced to ban smoking.....Starbuck's no longer had the corner on that smoke-free business.

The other indisputable fact is that Minnesota's smoking bans took effect prior to our economic downturn, subsequently the avalanche of smoking ban affected hospitality closings also started at a time when our economy was booming; so economic downturn had nothing to do with Minnesota bar & restaurant closings. (In 2004, the last year without a ban only 14 MN establishments closed. As a side note, in 2005 there were approximately 1200 liquor licensed establishments in the Minneapolis / St. Paul area, so 417 closings represents the loss of 1/3 of Twin Cities establishments.)

Furthermore, a review of Minnesota's smoking ban law shows lawmakers knew the ban would destroy jobs....see language inserted into bill:

http://cleanairquality.blogspot.com/2008/08/review-of-minnesota-smoking-ban-law.html

excerpt:

"Dislocated worker"
(4) has been permanently separated from employment in a restaurant, bar, or lawful gambling organization from October 1, 2007, to October 1, 2009, due to the implementation of any state law prohibiting smoking;

Sec. 13. DISLOCATED WORKER PROGRAM; ALLOCATION OF FUNDS.
The Job Skills Partnership Board must enable the dislocated worker program under Minnesota Statutes, section 116L.17, to provide services under that program to employees of bars, restaurants, and lawful gambling organizations who become unemployed from October 1, 2007, to October 1, 2009, due to the provisions of this act.

(see "review" link above)


Additional note, "studies" that showed "no financial impact" from smoking bans have repeatedly been discredited, such as this recent university "study"

http://cleanairquality.blogspot.com/2010/07/clearway-mn-dusts-off-old-study-which.html

And these economic impact of smoking ban studies:

http://cleanairquality.blogspot.com/2006/09/mpaat-now-known-as-clearway-minnesota.html

http://cleanairquality.blogspot.com/2006/03/minneapolis-revenue-numbers-for-bars.html

http://www.forbes.com/2009/06/04/economic-impact-bars-restaurants-opinions-contributors-smoking-ban.html

http://www.scribd.com/doc/8426223/Pakko

Update: State of Minnesota Auditor's Office finally comes clean, one year after smoking ban; revenues are down 31.9% on average:

http://cleanairquality.blogspot.com/2010/10/minnesota-releases-revenue-numbers-that.html

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