The Sedalia City Council met last night (May 23) to once again discuss the idea of a smoke free Sedalia. The pre-council meeting was a lively session of debate among the seven members in attendance, with the council clearly still split on the issue as they were at the work session earlier in the month.

City Attorney Ann Gardner spoke to the council about research she had brought to the council on 31 other cities who had adopted smoking bans in varying degrees ranging from a 100% ban in public buildings to no ban except those imposed by the owners of the businesses.

The main topic of discussion was supposed to be about what criteria defines a bar, the councilmen strayed into other areas. The most vocal members of the council were 4th Ward Councilman Larry Stevenson and 1st Ward Councilman Stephen Galliher, who were on opposite sides of the issue. At one point, Stevenson began passing out papers that said the issue needs to be put on the April 2013 Ballot for the voters to decide, something the Mayor and City Administrator told him was not appropriate before showing to the mayor for approval.

At the end of the pre-council meeting, it was decided that Ann Gardner would draft an ordinance to present to the council at the June 3 meeting. The draft will also be put on the city’s website for the public to view, which the mayor hopes will prompt the citizens of Sedalia to contact their councilman on the issue.

Smoking Ban
The public offers their opinions on the smoking ban in the city council chambers.

The public was able to voice their opinions in the regular city council meeting in the council chambers, with each person given three minutes to speak. The opinions seemed to be evenly split between those who oppose a ban and those who support it.

This is an issue that has two distinct sides to it, and if you want your side of the issue to be heard, call your councilman and tell them where you stand.  You can also take our smoking ban poll by clicking the button below.

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