Macedon Ranges council has moved to fill “gaps” in state legislation and has banned smoking at venues that serve food and drink on council land.
The council adopted its new Smoke Free Outdoor Areas Policy at a meeting last week after the draft policy received only positive public feedback.
As of August 1, the state government banned smoking in all outdoor venues where food is served – including privately-owned beer gardens and balconies. But the state legislation allows venues to designate areas for smoking and drinking only, and gives them the flexibility to change the status of outdoor areas to smoking and non-smoking at different times.
Under the new council rules, venues with outdoor spaces only on the footpath will now be forced to become 100 per cent smoke-free.
Manager of Gisborne’s The Jolly Miller, Brittany Klaaysen, told Star Weekly during the consultation period in August that the cafe supported a smoking ban.
Ms Klaaysen said the ban would “probably” affect a number of customers, but she hoped it would not deter them from attending the cafe.
“We do have a lot of regular customers who come and have a coffee and a smoke outside.”
At the same time Woodend’s Bourkies Bakery manager Adam Bourke told Star Weekly he was “all for” a ban on smoking in the bakery’s outside seating area.
“It’s not going to hurt you to walk 20 metres around the corner, then come and sit down and have your meal,” Mr Bourke said. “I prefer that people don’t smoke because of the mess it leaves on the ground and the smell for the other customers.”
Many pubs and restaurants will be unaffected by the ban as they have courtyards and beer gardens on private land – they will only be subject to the state laws.
In August, the council said its proposed ban would affect an estimated 60 businesses.
The report at last week’s meeting stated the policy aimed “to address perceived gaps in the new state legislation by creating smoke free outdoor dining and drinking areas where footpath trading occurs on council land”.