No Such Thing As Private


Delaware regulators want to snuff out any potential for bar owners to accomodate patrons who want to smoke.

"Bar owners say their hopes of declaring themselves private clubs to circumvent the state's smoking ban have been dashed by rules being written to make the Indoor Clean Air Act work…

"Under the Department of Health and Social Services' proposed definition of a private club, bar owners who want to make the switch would have to use subjective terms, such as a common interest, rather than objective criteria, such as a person's age, to screen potential members. They also would have to have selective membership, member-established bylaws and more than a cover charge amount for membership dues.

"Those were too much for Richard Malone, owner of Memories Lounge in Delmar. 'I was trying to find a way to work within the law, and being a private club sounded like a good idea,' he said. 'But they put up roadblocks at every turn and the way these rules are written, it could never work.'"

Also: California again considers raising the smoking age to 21.