SUPREME COURT: Cities Permitted to Restrict Tobacco Ads
For the second time in three years, the Supreme Court declined "to interfere with the power of cities to ban cigarette billboards and other outdoor signs," the Baltimore Sun reports. Without explanation yesterday, the high court refused to hear advertising companies' appeals challenging New York City's and Chicago's anticigarette advertising ordinances (Denniston, 4/18). In Chicago, outdoor cigarette ads are banned except for those near highways, in some commercial areas, at sports facilities and inside stores that sell cigarettes. In New York, ads cannot be within 1,000 feet of any school, playground, day care center or youth center. Both locations also prohibit cigarette ads at retail stores (AP/Investor's Business Daily, 4/18). The court's decision allows city governments to retain broad authority over restricting outdoor cigarette advertising. Three years ago, the court refused to hear a similar case challenging two Baltimore, Md., ordinances enacted to "insulate children from billboards and other signs that might entice them to smoke or drink." The Chicago and New York cases will return to lower courts to determine remaining constitutional arguments (Baltimore Sun, 4/18).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.