Massachusetts Economic Data

Attempts to create smokefree public places and workplaces in Massachusetts go back to 1978. A total of 231 clean indoor air laws had been enacted in the state by January 1, 2004. Of these, 103 were some kind of 100% law; either workplaces, restaurants, or bars, or some combination of the three. A statewide smokefree law, signed by Governor Mitt Romney on June 18, 2004, followed these comprehensive local laws.

A study published in the November-December 2007 issue of the Journal of Public Health Management & Practice, found that "smokers in Boston were significantly less likely to decrease their bar patronage after the ban was implemented in comparison with changes during the same period among smokers living in Massachusetts towns that continued to permit smoking in bars. Results also imply that compliance with the smoking ban was high, given the significant decline in reports by Boston smokers of observing smoking in bars. These results are consistent with findings from earlier studies on the impact of smoking bans in the hospitality industry that refute the dire predictions of economic losses and widespread noncompliance."

In 2007, a study published in the Journal of Community Health, examined the "environmental and economic effects of the statewide Massachusetts statewide Smoke-Free Workplace Law." The study concluded that not only had indoor air quality improved, but that there had been no statistically significant economic impact.

In 1999, a study published in the Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, examined meals tax data before and after enactment of local smokefree restaurant laws in Massachusetts. The study did not find a statistically significant effect of local clean indoor air laws on restaurant business. (Bartosch, W.J.; Pope, G.C., "The economic effect of smoke-free restaurant policies on restaurant business in Massachusetts," Journal of Public Health Management and Practice 5(1): 53-62, January 1999.)

A study published by the same authors in 2000, which was based on restaurant sales from 1992 to 1998, found that the restaurant industry is not economically affected by smokefree laws. (Bartosch W, Pope G. The Effect of Smoking Restrictions on Restaurant Business in Massachusetts, 1992-1998: A Summary of Findings: Center for Health Economics Research; 2000)