Tuesday, September 02, 2008

New Albany mayor vetoes controversial smoking ordinance.

I'm back from the scene in front of the City County Building, where Mayor Doug England vetoed the smoking ordinance this morning.

Mayor England seeks three exemptions to the smoking ordinance, which if implemented would "garner (his) support":

(1) bars
(2) private clubs
(3) restaurants with bars that serve and employ only persons who are 21 years of age

Here is the mayor's closing statement:

"In conclusion, I am really trying to heal our divided community via compromise. I have heard snokers and non-smokers alike speak in favor of and against the bill. This is not 'black and white' as the activists on either side of the issue would have you believe. I believe that my proposal strikes such a compromise. It is time for the Common Council and the activists to strike this balance, as well."

Let the games begin. I'm anxious to hear whether the definitions for "bar" being bandied about derive from the Indiana Alcohol & Tobacco Commission, the city council or the mayor's office. Speaking as a license holder, I believe the ATC's rules reign supreme.

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