City Council Debates Smoking Ban

The City Council had another heated debate on the proposed smoking ban Monday night. A final vote wasn't taken, but they did come up with what may be a compromise. After several hours, they voted down a proposal to allow smoking in bars where food makes up less than sixty percent of total sales. They did come up with a new amendment that would allow smoking in a ventilated room. That would include all businesses, as well as bars and restaurants. Businesses would have eighteen months to comply. But neither side is completely happy with the amendment. Some bar owners say the cost of adding the room could run small bars out of business. Health experts say a ventilation room could cost upwards of 10-thosuand dollars. Those who support the ban say a ventilation room won't be adequate enough for non-smokers. The Tobacco Free Lincoln Coalition is worried if a smoking room is put into place, they will never get their wish of a smoke free city. The City Council is expected to take a final vote next Monday.