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Montevideo eases rules for businesses to acquire city permit to construct patios for customers who smoke

MONTEVIDEO -- Restaurants and establishments that sell alcohol will have an easier time getting a city permit to construct outdoor decks and patios for their customers after the Montevideo City Council approved a new ordinance at its Monday meeting.

The city's previous ordinance was restrictive in what was allowed.

Under the new ordinance, businesses must still obtain a city building permit and abide by various construction codes.

The city has fielded inquiries from businesses interested in adding outdoor decks since the statewide ban on indoor smoking became law last year, City Manager Steve Jones said.

In other business, the council approved a resolution revising the rules on what decorations may be displayed at Sunset Memorial Cemetery. The changes were recommended by an ad hoc committee formed after the city received complaints about display items removed earlier this year.

In another matter, the council approved a $10,894 quote from Gilbertson Inc. to replace the roof on the city's old transit building. The roof was damaged in a July 31 windstorm.

Insurance will cover $7,453.32 of the city's costs for the roof replacement.

The city has a $1,000 deductible and the new roof is considered an upgrade since steel is being used in place of composite materials.