Click to Home
Go To Search
Cityscape at night
San Jose Home

View All Posts

Oct 22

Weigh in on possible changes to outdoor smoking regulations

Posted on October 22, 2013 at 12:00 AM by Communications Office

Proposed Changes
Share your thoughts on a proposed ordinance that would amend the Municipal Code pertaining to the regulation of outdoor smoking in San José!

The ordinance being considered would amend San José’s existing smoking regulations to prohibit smoking within a reasonable distance (25 feet) of outdoor areas where smoking is already prohibited.

View a draft copy of the proposed ordinance.

Current Outdoor Smoking Ordinance
San José has a long history of being a leader in the effort to combat the negative impacts of secondhand smoke by regulating smoking in most enclosed areas of buildings. In 2012, the City expanded the regulation to apply to certain outdoor areas such as:
     - Outdoor dining areas of restaurants
     - Unenclosed common areas of apartments, condominiums and mobile home parks
       (such as swimming pools, courtyards and playgrounds)
     - Service lines (such as bus stops, ticket lines and ATMs)

The proposed ordinance would clarify the regulation to prohibit smoking within a reasonable distance of 25 feet from the entrance of buildings which are open to the public, places of employment, and outdoor areas where smoking is already prohibited.

Bay Area Cities on Smoking Regulations
Other cities in the Bay Area with smoking regulations have similar language that prohibits smoking within a reasonable distance of areas that already prohibit smoking. This regulation would not apply to individuals who are actively passing an area that prohibits smoking while traveling to another destination.

Your Feedback Wanted
Tell us what you think of the proposed ordinance. Share your thoughts about the City’s current prohibitions on smoking in buildings and outdoor areas. 

You can weigh in on the issue by posting a comment here or sending an email to Allen Fong,, who's in the City Manager's Office.

The public's input will help shape next steps for possible changes to the smoking ordinance. No date has been scheduled yet as to when the City Council may consider this proposed amendment to the Municipal Code.

Please submit your comments by Friday, Dec. 20, 2013.


Teresa Zanella
October 22, 2013 at 4:19 PM
If I understand this correctly, the current law is that smoking is prohibited from certain outdoor areas and a proposal is wanted to make it 25 feet from these areas. I say leave it to NO SMOKING. I don't want them 25 feet away from my family, I want them not smoking around us at ALL
October 23, 2013 at 8:30 AM
As a former smoker I am rabid about keeping second hand smoke away from all of us. Hands down,this is a wonderfully complete resolution that addresses the discrimination piece well.
Jay S
October 23, 2013 at 10:28 AM
I was all for banning smoking etc., but it is becoming just too much. The fact of the matter is that it is a human being that is smoking and they may not doing it just by is after all an addiction that is very difficult to get rid of. Instead of alienating the population, why not invest in smoke safe structures where people can go inside and smoke and socialize. I am sure that the technology currently exists to trap all the bad air and convert it into Oxygen or water vapor.
Tracy Hamilton
November 1, 2013 at 10:30 AM
can we make sure it's clear that it means ALL smoking. I smell more pot than I do tobacco smoke and Im getting sick of it.
Mark Burns
November 5, 2013 at 10:32 AM
Multi-Family areas need to be further defined to include townhomes, condominiums, and apartments. The law needs to go further to include exposure to secondhand smoke from adjacent neighbors. The welfare and safety of residents who suffer from COPD, Asthma, Allergies, other related respiratory issues is truly important. It is important for healthy people as well. When was the last time you saw someone smoking at a gym?
Tim Santa Teresa
March 19, 2014 at 10:29 AM
Can you give an updated list of what Stores and Restaurants will be available at the new Village Oaks Development? Currently i see panera bread, 5 guys burgers, and a few other chains. i was wondering if there would be any high quality dinning options in that area which is not associated to a franchise?
Communications Office
March 19, 2014 at 12:53 PM
Tim, contact the developers directly for information about the Village Oaks Development. Their contact information was included in the link you provided. Generally, the Department of Planning, Building & Code Enforcement does not know future tenants until such time that each individual space has come in for what's termed an "interior finish" permit. Also, for future reference, review the Building Division's online permit reports,, which is published monthly.

You must log in before leaving your comment