Capping months of debate, the Irving City Council
strengthened its smoking ban but exempted many existing businesses in a 6-3
A 2006 law banned smoking in most public places but left many exceptions. On Thursday, the council banned smoking in public parks and forced 10 sports-themed cafes to eliminate their smoking sections.
But restaurants such as Cool River Cafe, which installed expensive ventilation to have smoking sections under the old law, will be able to keep them under a grandfather clause. So will a bingo hall and several hotels.