L.A. moves forward on yearlong fast-food ban

LOS ANGELES A Los Angeles City Council committee on Tuesday approved an ordinance that would prevent the opening of quick-service restaurants in certain parts of the city for one year. The measure now moves to a vote by the full council, though a date has not been disclosed.

The moratorium is intended to provide time for city officials to develop ways of attracting full-service restaurants and grocery stores to South Los Angeles. City lawmakers say diet-related health problems in those areas are particularly high as a result of the proliferation of quick-service outlets.

“This ordinance is in no way attempting to tell people what to eat, but rather responding to the need to attract sit-down restaurants, full-service grocery stores, and healthy food alternatives,” said Jan Perry, the city councilwoman who introduced the plan. “Ultimately this ordinance is about providing choices — something that is currently lacking in our community. South Los Angeles represents a mere 32 square miles of a city that is 468 square miles in size, and yet it is home to the largest percentage of fast-food establishments.”

Perry contends that bringing in full-service restaurants and grocery stores also will attract greater amenities to areas targeted for redevelopment.