Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter I. General.


§ 7–1701. Findings and purpose.

(a) The Council of the District of Columbia finds that the inhalation of concentrated smoke resulting from the smoking of tobacco in facilities in which the public congregates is a clear danger to health and a cause of inconvenience and discomfort to persons present in such facilities.

(b) The purpose of this subchapter is to protect the public health, comfort, and environment by prohibiting smoking in certain facilities, vehicles, and restaurants open to or used by the general public and to protect children from exposure to the use of tobacco products by prohibiting their use in event sites for organized sporting events

(c) Except to the extent that § 8 of D.C. Law 3-22 modifies the Fire Prevention Code approved pursuant to the Construction Codes Approval and Amendments Act of 1986 [D.C. Law 6-216], this subchapter is intended to complement the provisions of Part 2 of those regulations and the provisions of §§ 35-251 to 35-254, which regulate public conduct on public passenger vehicles. It is not the intent of this subchapter to derogate in any manner from the provisions of the Fire Prevention Code approved pursuant to the Construction Codes Approval and Amendments Act of 1986 [D.C. Law 6-216] or from § 35-251(b)(1).


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 2, 26 DCR 390; Mar. 21, 1987, D.C. Law 6-216, § 13(g), 34 DCR 1072; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(a), 35 DCR 1182; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(a), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-911.

1973 Ed., § 6-821.

References in Text

The “Construction Codes Approval and Amendments Act of 1986,” referred to in two places in subsection (c), is D.C. Law 6-216.

Editor's Notes

Section 151 of Public Law 106-522 provided for a Federal contribution of $100,000 to the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia, effective upon the enactment by the District of Columbia of a law which banned the possession of tobacco products by minors; and provided that the Metropolitan Police Department shall use the contribution to enforce that law.

Section 130 of Pub. L. 107-96 provided for a Federal contribution of $100,000 to the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia, effective upon the enactment by the District of Columbia of a law which banned the possession of tobacco products by minors; and provided that the Metropolitan Police Department shall use the contribution to enforce that law.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.

Delegation of authority pursuant to D.C. Law 3-22, the “District of Columbia Smoking Restrictions Act of 1979”, see Mayor’s Order 98-138, August 20, 1998 ( 45 DCR 6588).

Amended Delegation of authority pursuant to D.C. Law 3-22, the “District of Columbia Smoking Restrictions Act of 1979”, see Mayor’s Order 98-161, September 25, 1998 ( 45 DCR 7734).


§ 7–1702. Definitions.

For the purpose of this subchapter:

(1) “Bus stop” means a location that has been designated by a pole and appropriate signage as a place where passengers board a bus.

(1A) “Educational facility” means any enclosed indoor area used primarily as a library or for instruction of enrolled students, including day care centers, nursery schools, elementary schools, and secondary schools, except smoking lounges or specific smoking areas approved by the principal or president of the school, college, or university pursuant to guidelines established by the Board of Education, in the case of a public school, or by the trustees or other governing body, in the case of a college, university, or private educational institution. The term “educational facility” shall include all enclosed indoor areas supportive of instruction, including, but not limited to, classrooms, cafeterias, study areas and libraries, but excluding faculty lounges and specific areas approved by the principal of a given school pursuant to guidelines established by the Superintendent of Schools or the head of such private institutions.

(1B) "Event site for organized sporting events" means the entire physical area of a site that is designed for hosting organized sporting events, such as a stadium or arena, and includes all open, semi-open, and enclosed spaces and structures within the site, such as playing fields, dugouts, bullpens, training rooms, locker rooms, team bench areas, spectator seating areas, pedestrian walkways, bathrooms, dining areas, vendor areas, offices, recreational areas, press boxes, television and radio broadcasting booths, and stadium parking lots.

(2) “Health care facility” means any institution providing individual care or treatment of diseases or other medical, physiological, or psychological conditions, including, but not limited to, hospitals, clinics, laboratories, nursing homes or homes for the aged or chronically ill, but excluding private medical offices.

(3) “Mayor” means the Mayor of the District of Columbia or "his or her designated agent.

(3A) "Organized sporting events" means games or athletic competitions related to baseball, softball, football, basketball, ice hockey, field hockey, track and field, wrestling, boxing, lacrosse, or soccer, or any other event involving a game or athletic competition organized by a league or association of persons, including a professional, amateur, youth recreational, or school-sponsored league.

(4) “Person” means any individual, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind, including a government agency to which the health and safety laws of the District of Columbia may be applied.

(4A) “Playground” means a public or private facility intended primarily for recreation and not for residential use, with a portion of the facility that contains at least one separate apparatus intended for the recreation of children, including a sliding board, swing set, and teeterboard.

(4B) “Public recreational facility” means a park, dog park, trail, community facility, playground, swimming pool, spray park, neighborhood recreation center, or other similar facility that is owned or maintained by the District.

(5) “Restaurant” means a restaurant as defined in § 25-101(43), and any other establishments licensed by the District of Columbia in the business of preparing or serving food to the public. The term “restaurant” shall include coffee shops, cafeterias, luncheonettes, eateries, and soda fountains. The term “restaurant” shall not include sidewalks, terraces, or space used by restaurants to provide outdoor facilities, nightclubs, or taverns.

(6) “Retail store” means any establishment whose primary purpose is to sell or offer for sale to consumers, not for resale, any goods, wares, merchandise or food for consumption off the premises, and all activities, operations and services connected therewith or incidental thereto. The term “retail store” shall not include separate areas of a retail store which are used as a restaurant.

(7) "Smoking" or "to smoke" means the inhaling, exhaling, burning, or carrying of a lighted or heated cigar, cigarette, pipe, electronic smoking device, or any other tobacco or plant product intended for human consumption through inhalation, in any manner or in any form.

(8) "Tobacco product" means any product that is made from or derived from tobacco and is intended for human consumption or is likely to be consumed, whether smoked, heated, chewed, absorbed, dissolved, inhaled, or ingested by any other means, including through a cigarette, a cigar, pipe tobacco, chewing tobacco, snuff, snus, smokeless tobacco, or an electronic smoking device, as that term is defined in § 7-741.01(1). The term "tobacco product" also includes any component or accessory used in the consumption of a tobacco product, such as filters, rolling papers, pipes, or liquids used in electronic smoking devices. The term "tobacco product" does not include drugs, devices, or combination products authorized for sale by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, as those terms are defined in the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, approved June 25, 1938 (52 Stat. 1040; 21 U.S.C. § 301 et seq.).


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 3, 26 DCR 390; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(b), 35 DCR 1182; Dec. 13, 2013, D.C. Law 20-48, § 2(a), 60 DCR 15145; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(b), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-912.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-1703.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-48 redesignated (1) as (1A); added (1), (4A), and (4B); and rewrote (7).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-377, July 14, 2014, 61 DCR 7598, 20 STAT 3696).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by D.C. Law 20-155, § 7007.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1703. Smoking restrictions.

(a) Smoking shall be prohibited in the following:

(1) Any elevator, except in a single-family dwelling;

(2) Any public selling area of a retail store, except in a tobacco shop or store primarily concerned with selling tobacco and smoking equipment;

(3) Any public assembly or hearing room which is owned or leased by any branch, agency, or instrumentality of the District of Columbia government; this subsection shall not apply to the District of Columbia National Guard Armory ;

(4) Any educational facility except as provided in § 7-1702(1A);

(5) While transporting passengers within the corporate limits of the District of Columbia, any passenger vehicle owned or operated by the District of Columbia government, or any passenger vehicle for hire regulated under § 47-2829;

(6) Any area of a health care facility frequented by the general public, including hallways, waiting rooms and lobbies. The operator of a health care facility may designate separate areas as smoking areas.

(A) When a health care facility permits patients to smoke in bed space areas, such facility shall make a reasonable effort to determine a patient’s individual nonsmoking or smoking preference and assign patients who are to be placed in bed space areas utilized by 2 or more patients to a bed space area with patients who have a similar smoking preference.

(B) Hospital staff, visitors and the general public shall not smoke in bed space areas utilized by nonsmoking patients. “No Smoking” signs shall be conspicuously posted in such bed space areas.

(7) Any restaurant except as permitted in § 7-1703.01.

(8) Any public or private workplace, except as provided in § 7-1703.02.

(9) In a playground or public recreational facility or while sitting or standing within 25 feet of the property line of a playground or public recreational facility when another person is present; provided, that the following shall be exempt from this prohibition:

(A) Smoking or using tobacco on residential property that is located within 25 feet of a playground or public recreational facility; and

(B) Smoking or using tobacco in places enumerated in section 2015.1 of Title 20 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations (20 DCMR § 2105.1) that are located within 25 feet of a playground or public recreational facility.

(10) In a bus stop or while sitting or standing within 25 feet of a posted bus stop sign located at any bus stop controlled or maintained by the District when another person is present; provided, that the following shall be exempt from this prohibition:

(A) Smoking or using tobacco on residential property that is located within 25 feet of a bus stop sign posted at a bus stop controlled or maintained by the District; and

(B) Smoking or using tobacco in places enumerated in section 2015.1 of Title 20 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations (20 DCMR § 2105.1) that are located within 25 feet of a bus stop sign posted at a bus stop controlled or maintained by the District.

(b) The use of tobacco products shall be prohibited at event sites for organized sporting events at all times, regardless of their present use.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 4, 26 DCR 390; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(c), 35 DCR 1182; May 2, 1991, D.C. Law 8-262, § 2(a), 37 DCR 8434; Apr. 23, 2013, D.C. Law 19-270, § 4, 60 DCR 1717; Dec. 13, 2013, D.C. Law 20-48, § 2(b), 60 DCR 15145; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(c), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-913.

1973 Ed., § 6-823.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 19-270 deleted “except that smoking with the prior consent of all occupants of the vehicle shall be permitted when the vehicle is a limousine” following “under § 47-2829” in (5).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-48 added (9) and (10).

Cross References

For additional restrictions on smoking in all places of employment and enclosed public areas, see § 7-741 et seq.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 19-270, § 5, see § 7017 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 19-270, § 5, see 7017 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-377, July 14, 2014, 61 DCR 7598, 20 STAT 3696).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

Editor's Notes

For complete smoking ban in all places of employment and public places, see § 7-742.

Section 5 of D.C. Law 19-270 provided that the shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Section 2(b) of D.C. Law 20-48 would have added (9) and (10).

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Section 7017 of D.C. Law 20-61 repealed D.C. Law 19-270, § 5.

Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by D.C. Law 20-155, § 7007.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1703.01. Designated nonsmoking areas in restaurants; new construction and major renovation to existing restaurants; smoking areas.

(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, the owner, manager, or person in charge of any restaurant having a seating capacity of 50 or more shall designate at least 25% of the total seating capacity as a nonsmoking area. Bar and lounge seating in the restaurant is excluded from this total seating capacity calculation. Smoking shall be prohibited in these nonsmoking areas even if, after a certain hour, food is no longer served.

(b) Any new construction for the purpose of establishing a restaurant or major renovation, performed on or after March 29, 1988, to an existing restaurant, which has a seating capacity of 50 or more, shall contain a nonsmoking area that is at least 50% of the total seating capacity. Bar and lounge seating in the restaurant is excluded from this total seating capacity calculation. Smoking shall be prohibited in these nonsmoking areas even if, after a certain hour, food is no longer served. In accordance with § 7-1705(c), the Mayor shall define the term “major renovation”.

(c)(1) In areas where smoking is permitted pursuant to any provision of this subchapter, physical barriers or separate rooms may be used to the greatest extent possible to minimize the smoke in adjacent nonsmoking areas. Ventilation shall be in compliance with the District of Columbia laws and rules governing indoor ventilation.

(2) No area shall be designated as a smoking area where smoking is prohibited by the Fire Marshal or by other District of Columbia laws or rules.

(3) Smoking areas shall comply with all laws and rules of the District of Columbia.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 4a; as added Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(d), 35 DCR 1182.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-913.1.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-1703.

Editor's Notes

For complete smoking ban in all places of employment and public places, see § 7-742.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1703.02. Regulation of smoking in any District of Columbia workplace.

(a) Any private or public employer in the District of Columbia (“District”) shall, within 3 months of May 2, 1991, adopt, implement, and maintain a written smoking policy that contains the following provisions:

(1) Designation of an area in the workplace where smoking may be permitted. In an area where smoking is permitted, a physical barrier or a separate room shall be used to minimize smoke in any nonsmoking area. Ventilation shall be in compliance with the District laws and rules that govern indoor ventilation.

(2) Notification to employees orally and in writing by conspicuously posting the employer’s smoking policy within 3 weeks after the smoking policy is adopted. Any person in the workplace shall be subject to the posted smoking policy of the employer.

(b) The designation of a smoking area in the workplace affects employment relations and shall be a subject of collective bargaining in accordance with § 1-617.08(b).

(c) Nothing in the Smoking Regulation Amendment Act of 1990 shall be construed to prevent the owner or person in charge of a building or any part of a building from prohibiting smoking throughout the building or in any part of the building over which she or he has control.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 4b; as added May 2, 1991, D.C. Law 8-262, § 2(b), 37 DCR 8434.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-913.2.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-1703.

References in Text

The “Smoking Regulation Amendment Act of 1990”, referred to in (c), is D.C. Law 8-262.

Editor's Notes

For complete smoking ban in all places of employment and public places, see § 7-742.


§ 7–1703.03. Prohibition of employment discrimination on the basis of tobacco use.

(a) No person shall refuse to hire or employ any applicant for employment, or discharge or otherwise discriminate against any employee with respect to compensation or any other term, condition, or privilege of employment, on the basis of the use by the applicant or employee of tobacco or tobacco products. Nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting a person from establishing or enforcing workplace smoking restrictions that are required or permitted by this subchapter or other District or federal laws, or in establishing tobacco-use restrictions or prohibitions that constitute bona fide occupational qualifications.

(b) Any employee or applicant for employment who is aggrieved by a violation of subsection (a) of this section shall have a private cause of action against the person. An employee or applicant for employment shall pursue and exhaust all remedies available pursuant to any collective bargaining agreement, grievance procedure, or other established means of resolving employer-employee disputes, to resolve a violation of subsection (a) of this section, prior to commencing a civil action.

(c) Any employee or applicant for employment who is aggrieved by a violation of subsection (a) of this section shall be entitled to recover any damages, including lost or back wages or salary. The court, in its discretion, may allow the prevailing party a reasonable attorney’s fee as part of the costs.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 4c; as added Mar. 17, 1993, D.C. Law 9-240, § 2, 40 DCR 627.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-913.3.


§ 7–1703.04. No smoking within 25 feet of property signs.

(a) A property owner or ground-floor commercial tenant has the authority to post signs on his or her property stating that smoking or the use of tobacco products is not permitted on public space within a specified distance from and abutting the building wall. That distance shall not be greater than 25 feet or the distance to the far side of the adjacent public sidewalk, if any, whichever is less.

(b) An authorized sidewalk café shall not be subject to a no-smoking sign posted pursuant to this section unless the sign has been posted by, or with the consent of, the owner or operator of the sidewalk café.

(c) The penalties in § 7-1721.06 shall not apply to this section.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 4d; as added July 23, 2010, D.C. Law 18-189, § 2, 57 DCR 3019; Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-171, § 52(a), 59 DCR 6190; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(d), 63 DCR 15012.)

Effect of Amendments

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-171 redesignated D.C. Law 3-22, § 4c as D.C. Law 3-22, § 4d.


§ 7–1704. “No Smoking” signs.

(a) In any place, elevator, or vehicle in which smoking is prohibited, the owner, manager, or person in charge of the place, elevator, or vehicle shall post or cause to be posted signs that read, “No Smoking Under Penalty of Law”, “No Smoking Except in Smoking Areas”, or “Smoking in Accordance With Employer’s Smoking Policy Only”. In any place, elevator, or vehicle where smoking is restricted, the sign shall include the following warning: “Smoking causes lung cancer, heart disease, emphysema, and may cause fetal injury, premature birth, and low birth weight in pregnant women.” Signs posted shall clearly state the maximum fine for a violation of this subchapter. Signs shall be visible to the public at the entrance to the area and on the interior of the area in sufficient number in a manner that gives notice to the public of the applicable law.

(a-1) In a public recreational facility, the Director of the Department of Parks and Recreation shall post or cause to be posted signs that read “No Smoking. Need to quit? Contact the D.C. Quitline at 1-800-Quit-Now (784-8669).”

(a-2) In a private playground, the owner, manager, or individual or entity responsible for maintaining the private playground shall post or cause to be posted signs that read “No Smoking. Need to quit? Contact the D.C. Quitline at 1-800-Quit-Now (784-8669).”

(a-3) In any event site for organized sporting events, the owner, lessee, manager, operator, or person in charge of the event site for organized sporting events shall post or cause to be posted signs that read, "No Use of Tobacco Products." Signs posted shall clearly state the maximum fine for a violation of this subchapter. Signs shall be visible to the public at every entrance to the event site for organized sporting events and in all dugouts, bullpens, training rooms, locker rooms, team bench areas, spectator seating areas, bathrooms, vendor areas, press boxes, and television and radio broadcast booths.

(b) Where smoking is prohibited pursuant to this subchapter all signs posted shall include the internationally recognized no smoking symbol. Where smoking is restricted pursuant to this subchapter all signs posted shall include the internationally recognized smoking symbol.

(c) It shall be unlawful for any person to obscure, remove, deface, mutilate, or destroy any sign posted in accordance with the provisions of this subchapter.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 5, 26 DCR 390; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(e), 35 DCR 1182; May 2, 1991, D.C. Law 8-262, § 2(c), 37 DCR 8434; Mar. 17, 1993, D.C. Law 9-223, § 2, 40 DCR 590; Dec. 13, 2013, D.C. Law 20-48, § 2(c), 60 DCR 15145; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(e), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-914.

1973 Ed., § 6-824.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-742 and § 7-1706.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-48 added (a-1) and (a-2).

Section 2(c) of D.C. Law 20-48 added (a-1) and (a-2).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-377, July 14, 2014, 61 DCR 7598, 20 STAT 3696).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by § 7007 of emergency D.C. Act 20-377, effective July 14, 2014, and by § 7007 of emergency D.C. Act 20-449, effective Oct. 10, 2014.

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by D.C. Law 20-155, § 7007.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1705. Enforcement.

(a) The owner, lessee, manager, operator or other person in charge of a facility, event site for organized sporting events, or vehicle where smoking or the use of tobacco products is prohibited pursuant to this subchapter shall:

(1) Post and maintain the appropriate "No Smoking" or "No Use of Tobacco Products" signs; and

(2) Ask persons observed smoking or using tobacco products in violation of this subchapter to refrain from smoking or using tobacco products.

(b) Whenever the owner, lessee, manager or operator of a facility or event site for organized sporting events covered by this subchapter requires a license issued by the District of Columbia government in order to operate the facility or event site for organized sporting events, the owner, lessee, manager or operator shall comply with this subchapter as a requirement for receiving or renewing the license. Where an on-site inspection is required prior to issuance or renewal of a license, the inspector should certify that the appropriate signs have been posted. In those cases where an on-site inspection is not needed, a signed statement by the applicant that he has complied with this subchapter shall constitute sufficient evidence of compliance as required in this subsection. Violation of this subchapter shall be grounds for license suspension or revocation.

(c) The Mayor is authorized to promulgate any regulations needed to carry out the provisions of this subchapter.

(d) An aggrieved person or class of persons may bring an action in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia for injunctive relief to prevent any owner, lessee, manager, operator or person otherwise in charge of a facility, event site for organized sporting events, or vehicle where smoking or the use of tobacco products is prohibited pursuant to this subchapter from violating, or continuing to violate, any provision of this subchapter. For the purposes of this subsection, an “aggrieved person” shall be defined as any person subjected to tobacco smoke due to failure to comply with this subchapter.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 6, 26 DCR 390; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(f), 35 DCR 1182; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(f), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-915.

1973 Ed., § 6-825.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 7-1703.01.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1706. Civil penalties.

Any person who violates any provision of this subchapter, other than § 8 of D.C. Law 3-22, by:

(1) Smoking or using tobacco products in a posted "No Smoking" or "No Use of Tobacco Products" area or defacing or removing a "No Smoking" or "'No Use of Tobacco Products" sign, or failing to post warning signs as set forth in § 7-1704(a) and (a-3) shall be assessed a civil fine of no less than $10 nor more than $50 for the 1st violation; and no less than $50 nor more than $100 for each 2nd or subsequent violation; or

(2) Obscuring, removing, defacing, mutilating, or destroying a sign posted in accordance with the provisions of this subchapter shall be assessed a civil fine of no more than $300; or

(3) Failing to post or cause to be posted "No Smoking" or "No Use of Tobacco Products" signs and by failing to warn a smoker or user of tobacco products observed to be smoking or using tobacco products in violation of this subchapter to stop doing so, as required by this subchapter, shall be assessed a civil fine of no more than $300. Each and every day that the violation continues shall constitute a separate violation, and the civil penalties provided for in this paragraph shall be applicable to each separate offense; provided, that such civil penalties shall not be levied against an employee or officer of a branch, agency, or instrumentality of the District government.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 7, 26 DCR 390; Oct. 5, 1985, D.C. Law 6-42, § 411, 32 DCR 4450; Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(g), 35 DCR 1182; May 2, 1991, D.C. Law 8-262, § 2(d), 37 DCR 8434; Dec. 13, 2013, D.C. Law 20-48, § 2(d), 60 DCR 15145; Feb. 18, 2017, D.C. Law 21-194, § 2(g), 63 DCR 15012.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-916.

1973 Ed., § 6-826.

Effect of Amendments

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-48 added “Civil” in the section heading; and rewrote the section.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-377, July 14, 2014, 61 DCR 7598, 20 STAT 3696).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-449, October 10, 2014, 61 DCR 10915, 20 STAT 4188).

For temporary (90 days) repeal of D.C. Law 20-48, § 4, see § 7007 of the Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Support Second Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2014 (D.C. Act 20-566, January 9, 2015, 62 DCR 884, 21 STAT 541).

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 provided that the act shall apply upon the inclusion of its fiscal effect in an approved budget and financial plan, as certified by the Chief Financial Officer to the Budget Director of the Council in a certification published by the Council in the District of Columbia Register.

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-48: Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by § 7007 of emergency D.C. Act 20-377, effective July 14, 2014, and by § 7007 of emergency D.C. Act 20-449, effective Oct. 10, 2014.

Section 4 of D.C. Law 20-48 was repealed by D.C. Law 20-155, § 7007.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1707. Severability.

If any provision of this subchapter, or its application to a particular person or circumstance is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this subchapter.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 9, 26 DCR 390.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-917.

1973 Ed., § 6-827.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1708. Exceptions.

This subchapter shall not prohibit smoking in the following areas:

(1) An area where smoking is permitted by any provision of this subchapter;

(2) A tobacco shop or store primarily concerned with selling tobacco and smoking equipment;

(3) Upon the stage by performers during the course of any theatrical performance if smoking is part of the theatrical production;

(4) A tavern or nightclub as defined in § 25-101(52) and (33), respectively; or

(5) A room or hall that is used for private social functions, which includes weddings, banquets, and parties.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 10; as added Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(h), 35 DCR 1182; Mar. 2, 2007, D.C. Law 16-191, § 34, 53 DCR 6794.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-918.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-191, in par. (4), substituted “§ 25-101(52) and (33)” for “§ 25-103(17) and (23)”.

References in Text

Section 25-103, referred to in paragraph (4) of this section, is part of Title 25, D.C. Code, which title was amended and enacted by D.C. Law 13-298, effective May 3, 2001. For disposition of the subject matter of former Title 25, see the Disposition Table preceding § 25-101.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1709. Tobacco smoking education and smoking cessation programs.

The Mayor shall establish, in conjunction with the District of Columbia Commissioner of Public Health or any other agencies or departments of the District, a program to educate the general public on the issue of smoking and involuntary smoking, the health risks involved, and the requirements of this subchapter, explaining what the subchapter does and why it is important. The Mayor shall establish a smoking cessation program that provides free counseling, information, and whatever other assistance is deemed necessary by the District of Columbia Commissioner of Public Health for the purpose of assisting, upon request, persons residing in the District of Columbia to stop smoking tobacco products.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 11; as added Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(i), 35 DCR 1182.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-919.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.


§ 7–1710. Smoking prohibitions pursuant to existing law.

Nothing in this subchapter shall make lawful smoking in any place in which smoking is prohibited pursuant to § 6-1401 et seq., § 35-251(b), or any other District of Columbia or federal law.


(Sept. 28, 1979, D.C. Law 3-22, § 12; as added Mar. 29, 1988, D.C. Law 7-100, § 2(j), 35 DCR 1182.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 6-920.

Delegation of Authority

Delegation of authority under D.C. Law 3-22, the District of Columbia Smoking Restriction Act of 1979, see Mayor’s Order 90-192, December 13, 1990.