The Economic Effect of Smoke-Free Restaurant Policies on Restaurant Business in Massachusetts

William J. Bartosch and Gregory C. Pope. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice. 1999; 5(1): 53-62.

The objective of the study was to determine if local smoke-free restaurant policies in Massachusetts affected restaurant sales. The authors used a pre-/post-quasi-experimental design to compare town-level meals tax data before and after the imposition of local smoke-free restaurant policies. Data for 235 towns (including 32 adopting communities) were entered into a fixed effect regression model to estimate changes in restaurant sales over time. The study failed to find a statistically significant effect of local smoke-free policies on restaurant business. It provides evidence that local smoke-free policies do not cause a large decline in communities' restaurant industries.

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