Smoking Ban Gets Mixed Reaction
JEFFERSON CITY- Voters in Jefferson City passed a smoking ban ordinance on Tuesday that will go into effect in 90 days.
Supporters of the ban have been working to get the ordinance passed since 2003. According to members of smoke-free Jefferson City, the city council decided to put the issue on the November ballots after more than 1,000 signatures were gathered in a petition this summer.
"The city council just thought it was too controversial for them to do it on their own, that it was probably the right direction for us to take it to the ballot, because that way the people could actually vote one it."
Organizers describe the process as a grassroots effort driven by community members.
58 percent of voters were in favor of the ban, but not everyone in Jefferson City is celebrating.
Many local business owners have voiced concern about the ban and the negative effects it may have on business.
Jenny and Rich Robben have owned the Mission since 2008.
They built the music venue and bar all on their own and are struggling to find a new way to accommodate patrons who smoke.
They wanted to build a smoking deck, but due to city requirements on parking, they don't have the space.
Jason Jordan, owner of Mortimer Kegley's, is also unsure of where his business is going.
"No clue what's going to happen next. All I know is, I have to change my business plan and try to start catering to a little different crowd I guess and try to blend both crowds and hope that I don't lose anybody," Jordan said.