NEW YORK, March 30 (UPI) -- A municipal study finds New York restaurants and bars have been doing well financially since a total ban on smoking took effect.
The report, prepared by the city's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, also found air pollution in taverns and restaurants has dropped to one-sixth its pre-ban level.
"It really confirms that New York City is now a healthier place to work, eat and drink," Dr. Thomas Frieden, the department's commissioner, told the New York Times.
The study found more jobs are now available in bars and restaurants, as are liquor licenses and tax receipts from sales of food and liquor.
But David Rabin, president of the New York Nightlife Association, told the Times the survey is flawed because investigators lumped bars and restaurants together.
Rabin said taverns have lost business, but restaurant business is up only because of economic recovery -- not the smoking ban.