ORDINANCE NO. 618.1 No longer operative

REPEALED Per Ord. 798 - Effective: 11/25/99)

(Minute Order dated 10/26/1999 - Item #3.5 )

(Re: Prohibition of Smoking)




The Board of Supervisors of the County of Riverside, State of California, do ordain as follows:

SECTION 1. The smoking of tobacco or any other weed or plant is a positive danger to health and a material annoyance, inconvenience, discomfort and a health hazard to those who are present in confined spaces, and in order to serve public health, safety and welfare, the declared purpose of this ordinance is to protect nonsmokers to the maximum extent possible from secondhand smoke in public places and places of employment, as stated and required in this ordinance:

SECTION 2. For the purposes of this ordinance, the following definitions apply:

a. "Bar" shall mean an area which is devoted to serving of alcoholic beverages and in which the service of food is only incidental to the consumption of such beverages.

b. "Eating establishment" means every publicly or privately owned eating place, including every coffee shop, cafeteria, short‑order cafe, luncheonette, sandwich shop, soda fountain and restaurant.

c. "Employee" means any person who is employed by an employer for direct or indirect monetary wages or profit.

d. "Employer" means any person who employs the services of an individual person.

e. "Enclosed" means closed in by a roof and four walls with appropriate openings for ingress and egress, but does not include areas commonly described as public lobbies.

f. "Motion picture theater" means any theater engaged in the business of exhibiting motion pictures.

g. "Smoking" means the combustion of any cigar, cigarette, pipe or any similar articles, using any form of tobacco or other combustible substance in any form.

h. "Workplace" means any enclosed area of a structure or portion thereof intended for occupancy by business entities which will provide primarily clerical, professional or business services to other business entities or to the public, at that location. Workplace includes, but is not limited to, office spaces in office buildings, medical office waiting rooms, libraries, museums, hospitals and nursing homes.

Except as herein defined, words used in this ordinance shall have the meanings commonly ascribed to them. In case of a dispute over the meaning of a word, the definition shall be that given in the most recent edition of Webster's Collegiate Dictionary.

SECTION 3. SMOKING PROHIBITED‑‑ELEVATORS. Smoking is prohibited and is unlawful in elevators.


a. In public areas of health care facilities and hospitals, as defined in Section 1250 of the California Health and Safety Code, including waiting rooms, public hallways and lobbies, smoking is prohibited, except in specially designated smoking areas, which may be all or part of a public area.

b. Every publicly or privately owned health care facility, including hospitals, shall make a reasonable effort to determine preference and to assign patients placed in rooms occupied by two or more patients according to the patient's individual nonsmoking or smoking preference. Where a nonsmoker is placed in a room with a smoker, the rights of the nonsmoker shall be given precedence.

c. In rooms and areas occupied by patients, smoking shall be prohibited for hospital staff, visitors and the general public. 'STAFF AND VISITOR SMOKING PROHIBITED' signs and/or the international logo sign for no smoking shall be conspicuously posted in each patient room.

d. In child care facilities, including those in private homes, during operating hours in rooms where children are present, smoking is prohibited.

SECTION 5. SMOKING PROHIBITED‑‑PUBLIC MEETING ROOMS. Smoking is prohibited and is unlawful in hearing rooms, conference rooms, chambers and places of public assembly in which public business is conducted, when the public business requires or provides direct participation or observation by the general public.

SECTION 6. SMOKING PROHIBITED‑‑THEATERS AND AUDITORIUMS. Smoking is prohibited and is unlawful in every publicly or privately owned theater, auditorium or other enclosed facility which is open to the public for the primary purpose of exhibiting any motion picture, stage drama, musical recital, athletic events or any other performance or event in all areas except either in that area commonly known as the lobby, or in areas not open to the public, except athletic events where smoking shall be permitted in specially designated areas. Every owner and/or manager of such theater, auditorium or other enclosed facility used for the purposes stated herein, shall post signs conspicuously in the lobby stating that smoking is prohibited within the theater, auditorium or facility, and in the case of motion picture theaters, such information shall be shown upon the screen for at least five seconds before showing feature motion pictures.

SECTION 7. SMOKING PROHIBITED‑‑EATING ESTABLISHMENTS. Smoking is prohibited and is unlawful in all indoor eating establishments serving food whose occupancy capacity is fifty or more persons. This prohibition shall not apply to any such establishment maintaining a contiguous no smoking area of at least one‑quarter of the seating capacity. This prohibition shall not apply to any rooms which are being used for establishment purposes for private functions. If a smoking area is maintained, the preference of the patron is to be determined by the management and the patron shall be seated according to preference if possible. Any portion of an indoor eating establishment used for bar purposes is excluded from the restrictions of this section.

SECTION 8. SMOKING PROHIBITED‑‑DEPARTMENT STORES. Smoking is prohibited and is unlawful in public areas of every department store which sells dry goods, clothing or utensils, excluding areas outdoors.


a. Within 90 days of the effective date of this ordinance, or within 90 days of having first engaged the services of an employee, for employers who are not in operation on the effective date of this ordinance, each employer shall adopt, implement and maintain a reasonable written smoking policy which should contain at a minimum the following:

1.Prohibition of smoking in employer conference and meeting rooms, classrooms, auditoriums, restrooms, medical facilities, hallways and elevators.

2.Provision and maintenance of a contiguous no smoking area of not less than one‑half of the seating capacity and floor space in cafeterias, lunchrooms and employee lounges.

3.Any employee in the workplace shall be given the right to designate his or her immediate work area as a nonsmoking area and to post it with appropriate signs or sign. The policy adopted by the employer shall include a definition of the term 'immediate work area' which gives preferential consideration to nonsmokers.

b. In any dispute arising under the smoking policy, the rights of the nonsmoker shall be given precedence.

c. Except where other signs are required, whenever smoking is prohibited, conspicuous signs shall be posted so stating, containing all capital lettering not less than one inch in height, on a contrasting background. In lieu of such signs the international no smoking logo may be prominently displayed.

d. The smoking policy shall be communicated to all employees within two weeks of its adoption.

e.Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection a. of this section, every employer shall have the right to designate any working place as a nonsmoking area.

fThis section is not intended to regulate smoking in the following places and under the following conditions:

1.A private home which may serve as a workplace, except as required pursuant to Subsection d. of Section 4.

2. Any property owned or leased by other governmental agencies.

3. A private, enclosed workplace occupied exclusively bysmokers, even though such a workplace may be visited by nonsmokers, excepting places in which smoking is prohibited by the fire marshal or by other law, ordinance or regulation.

4.Food and beverage service areas of indoor eating establishments.

g. An employer who in good faith develops and promulgates a reasonable written policy regarding smoking and nonsmoking in the workplace shall be deemed to be in compliance with this chapter provided that a policy which designates an entire workplace as a smoking area shall not be deemed a reasonable policy.


a. Except where other signs are required, whenever in this ordinance smoking is prohibited, conspicuous signs shall be posted so stating, containing all capital lettering not less than one inch in height and/or the international no smoking logo, on a contrasting background. It is the duty of the owner, operator, manager or other persons having control of such room, building or other place where smoking is prohibited, to post such signs or to cause such signs to be posted.

b. It shall be unlawful to willfully mutilate or destroy any signs required by this ordinance.

SECTION 11. OTHER AGENCY COOPERATION. Federal, State, school and special district officials are urged to enact and enforce provisions similar to the provisions contained herein.


a. It shall be the responsibility of employers to provide smoke‑free areas for nonsmokers within existing facilities to the maximum extent possible, but employers are not required to incur any expense to make structural or other physical modifications in providing these areas.

b.Nothing in this ordinance shall require the owner, operator or manager of any theater, auditorium, health care facility or any building, facility, structure or business to incur any expense to make structural or other physical modifications to any area or workplace.

c. Nothing in this section shall relieve any person from the duty to post signs or adopt policies as required by this ordinance.


Any owner or manager of a business or other establishment subject to this ordinance may apply to the individual, department or agency designated by the Board of Supervisors for an exemption or modification to any provisions of this chapter due to unusual circumstances or conditions.

a. Such exemption shall be granted only if the designated individual, department or agency designated by the Board of Supervisors finds from the evidence presented by the applicant for exemption at a public hearing either that:

1.The applicant cannot comply with the provisions of this ordinance for which an exemption is requested without incurring expenses for structural or other physical modifications, other than posting signs, to buildings and structures.

2.Due to such unusual circumstances, the failure to comply with the provision for which the exemption is requested will not result in a danger to health or annoyance, inconvenience or discomfort.

b. The applicant for an exemption shall pay the fee prescribed by the Board of Supervisors resolution with the application to cover cost of the hearing and noticing of the hearing.


The following organizations and activities are not subject to the provisions of this ordinance:

a. Activities organized, and while operating, under the provisions of Riverside County Ordinance No. 558 (Bingo Ordinance).


Violation of any provision or failure to comply with any requirement of this ordinance is an infraction.


If any provision or clause of this ordinance or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held to be unconstitutional or to be otherwise invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, such invalidity shall not affect other ordinance provisions or clauses or applications thereof which can be implemented without the invalid provisions or clause or application, and of this end the provisions and clauses of the ordinance are declared to be severable.

This ordinance shall be reviewed by the Board of Supervisors one year from its publication date.

ADOPTED: 618 7/23/85 (Eff.: 8/22/85)

AMENDED: 618.1(Eff.: 2/20/86)

(798) (10/26/99) (REPEALED - Effective: 11/25/99)