New smoking bill ban being considered in St. Charles County

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by Elizabeth Eisele/ KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on September 7, 2013 at 10:36 PM

Updated Saturday, Sep 7 at 11:10 PM

(KMOV.com) -- A renewed effort has formed in St. Charles County to implement a smoking ban.

Many attempts have failed, but a councilman said he has come up with a new proposal that will satisfy business owners.

Previous proposals have allowed casinos to opt out of the ban. However, bar and small business owners took issue with the unfair exemptions for the casino.

The new proposal from St. Charles County Councilman Joe Cronin changes the exemptions. It would allow businesses to opt out of the smoking ban if they post signs and restrict children from entering.

“I think everybody’s pretty much in agreement that we owe it to our kids to protect their health,” said Cronin, “Every business owner has the right to make that decision whether you’re the casino, a bar, a factory or a restaurant.”

Cronin will introduce this latest version of a smoking ban at Monday’s St. Charles County meeting.

Well received or not, the measure will not go on a ballot for voters to decide. It will be up to the county and the county executive to approve or deny. Cronin said it will save taxpayers about $200,000 in polling costs.

Previously, St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann did veto a council approved ban in 2011.

Cronin said anti-smoking ban groups call the new measure a very small step in the right direction, but would like to see the new ban offer more exemptions. 

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