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Editorial: Not just blowing smoke

June 26, 2010

Anyone who thought our city didn't need some sort of smoking intervention were proven wrong this week when public health officials released 2007 figures that put us near the high-end of reported tobacco use.

In 2007, the adult smoking rate was in the 15% to 16% range, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. It was the last survey before city officials started implementing broad anti-smoking measures meant to limit the public's exposure to second-hand smoke.

In cities like Burbank and Glendale, where tobacco straddles addiction and cultural categories, moves to prohibit smoking in many public areas represented a significant sea change.

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Officials should be commended for moving the battle lines forward well before the latest shaming report was released, as should the business owners and other stakeholders who have largely embraced the new regulations.

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