Published: Monday, April 25, 2011 at 8:35 p.m. Last Modified: Monday, April 25, 2011 at 8:35 p.m.
City Council approved a smoking ban Monday night that bans smoking in restaurants and at city-sponsored events.
With two members voting in opposition, council decided on a more restrictive ban than staff initially proposed.
Numerous business owners and residents spoke against a smoking ban during a public hearing, but the vast majority of those who attended the meeting spoke in favor of a smoking ordinance.
Councilwoman Linda Dogan and Councilman Robert Reeder voted against the ordinance.
If council approves final reading on the ordinance, it will go into effect on Sept. 1. The ordinance restricts smoking in all restaurants and bars. Restaurants would be allowed to have a designated smoking area.
C. Edwards Cigar Bar would be exempt from the ordinance since a majority of its revenue is from the sale of tobacco products. No smoking would be permitted at city-sponsored outdoor events such as Music on Main, Jazz on the Square, International Festival or Spring Fling after Councilman Jerome Rice proposed the city lead by example and not allow designated smoking areas during those events.
Smokers would be required to be at least 15 feet from entrances and exits to commercial locations with public access.
The ordinance does not ban smoking in public parks or sidewalks.
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