No Smoking...In Casinos?
An article in USA Today talks about the ban on smoking in Atlantic City, the second biggest gambling city in the United States which brought in $5.2 billion in revenue in 2006. New Jersey has previously outlawed smoking in all bars, restaurants and other working places. Beginning in April, smoking will only be allowed in a designated 25% of the gambling floors and proposals are currently underway to outlaw smoking altogether in New Jersey casinos. Colorado, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Lake Tahoe are not far behind New Jersey in putting bans on smoking. Many are arguing that this ban on smoking will hurt these casinos profitability and make them unable to compete against casinos in other areas that permit smoking. I personally don't think that it will hurt business that much, in fact from other information I've looked at banning smoking has actually increased business. Maybe some avid smoking activists will travel to other destinations that allow smoking, but how many new non-smokers will come out to the gambling floor because they won't have to worry about that constant overhead cloud of smoke and go home smelling like a bar? As long as there are designated smoking areas, even if outside, I think the casinos will be economically better off and a much better environment.