The Economic Losers from Smoking Bans
6 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2010 Last revised: 19 Nov 2010
Date Written: June 29, 2010
Proponents of smoking bans frequently claim that the bans do not have detrimental economic effects on businesses in the hospitality industry. In making this claim, the proponents typically cite aggregate hospitality industry data indicating there is little change in gross receipts or tax receipts following the implementation of a ban. Such analysis does not detect the economic effect of bans on specific businesses or types of business - for instance, economic harm to bars from such a ban may be offset by gains by restaurants. This paper attempts to determine which types of hospitality businesses are “winners” and which are “losers” under the ban. The paper examines noncompliance violations in Ohio, where a ban was recently implemented, under the theory that businesses that repeatedly violate the ban believe it is in their economic interest to do so. The research finds that Ohio restaurants rarely violate the ban, but bars and fraternal organizations often do.
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