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Smoking ordinance in limbo

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Advocates for a tougher smoking ordinance in Augusta showed up at Augusta Commission committee meetings Monday, but its sponsor said they were two weeks early.

Members of the Breath­Easy Augusta coalition thought a tougher ordinance would be proposed Monday, but Mayor Pro Tem Corey Johnson, who will sponsor it, said it will actually be in the second round of committee meetings in October, which would start Oct. 28.

The process will include a public hearing for people to ask questions and voice concerns, Johnson said. Most of the commission members know it is coming and “they understand how important it is,” Johnson said, especially because Augusta has an opportunity to become “the medical mecca of the South.”

Augusta is covered by a state law that prohibits smoking in restaurants and places that admit anyone under age 18. The ordinance proposed last year would have added bars and most other public places to that, but the commission voted it down.

In the meantime, advocates are busy trying to frame the debate in advance.

“We’ve heard a lot of people talking about this as a smoking ban, and that’s not what this is,” said Kirk Miller, the Georgia grassroots manager for American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network. “This is not a ban on smoking. This is not an attempt to vilify smokers. What we’re looking to do is ask the people who smoke that they take it outside. This is really about protecting workers.”

Part of that is educating the public about secondhand smoke, said Jennifer Anderson, the chairwoman of the coalition. The group hands out materials that list the toxic substances in that smoke, which it says includes hydrogen cyanide, formaldehyde and arsenic.

“If folks were aware of what the hazards were, they would be a little bit more vocal about secondhand smoke,” Anderson said.

Comments (14) Add comment
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SRD
441
Points
SRD 10/07/13 - 07:53 pm
5
4
Smoking Gun

This is so ridiculous. Give it up! You want to remove toxins, well stop driving your toxic car, stop using your fireplace, charcoal grill, stop using your microwave, stop wearing perfume, and kill all of the cows that are killing the ozone. You people are out of your minds. Get a life! There are really worthy causes you should be focusing on, there are children without roles models, no dinner at home, no one to help them with homework, unemployed people who really want to work, rehab programs, and the list goes on and on. Smoking in public is such an insignificant issue when you look at all of the other really SERIOUS ISSUES out there.

dichotomy
33495
Points
dichotomy 10/07/13 - 08:01 pm
6
4
Allow bars to decide if they

Allow bars to decide if they will be smoking or non-smoking. It is the logical thing to do. Legalize E-cigarettes in ALL locations. There is no smoke or carcinogens involved, only water vapor is exhaled, and IF there is nicotine in the E-cigarette it is absorbed into the lungs and is not exhaled. Legalize them in all places.

Send the busybody crusaders a message that this anti-smoking thing has gone far enough. Let businesses and patrons have a CHOICE. It's the free thing to do. I'm sure you arrogant politicians can remember what FREEDOM means if you really think about it.

Bodhisattva
6305
Points
Bodhisattva 10/08/13 - 06:09 am
1
3
I scanned down the list of

I scanned down the list of articles and, unless I missed it, none linked to the wording of the actual ordinance. Above, Kirk Miller says, “This is not a ban on smoking. This is not an attempt to vilify smokers. What we’re looking to do is ask the people who smoke that they take it outside. This is really about protecting workers.” The next to last link has a statement that says, "The stricter ordinance, pushed by the Rich­mond County Board of Health and a coalition of health advocates, would have banned smoking in all public places, at outdoor work sites". So which is it? Can a bar not have a patio to accommodate smokers? Wouldn't that be an outdoor work site? Isn't the sidewalk a public place? Does the ban, like the one at AC/MCG ban e-cigarettes? A brilliant idea since many use them to wean themselves off cigarettes. No second hand smoke with dipping. Why a ban? Sell soda and candy bars GRU? It can't be for health reasons, that would be hypocritical. Just admit you're an anti tobacco group and your goal is a total ban and that you're just trying to take it away little by little. Isn't there a hookah bar downtown? Is that business just shut down? A cigar bar? Personally, I'd rather you ban the people who think if a little bit of perfume is good, a lot is better, and a whole lot is awesome. I'll take cigarette, cigar, and pipe tobacco smoke any day over some of the scent abusers I've run across. BTW, I can't find the wording of the ordinance on the BreathEasy website either. It does let me know Deke supports it. That's not really a plus.

Graymare
3244
Points
Graymare 10/08/13 - 06:48 am
4
3
Cigs are a health hazard, but

Cigs are a health hazard, but let's talk about other odors like perfume. Perfume and colognes gives people migraines and are a health hazard to folks with respiratory illnesses. It'll take your breath away, hit you right between the eyes and makes one feel like they will throw up and pass out. Why do some ladies and gents feel like they have to put on a gallon of some stinking perfume then expose it to the public? Phew! I don't care how much you paid for it, it's making folks sick. Take a bath, clean smell is the best. Have some consideration for others!

bdouglas
5131
Points
bdouglas 10/08/13 - 08:40 am
1
1
"Advocates for a tougher

"Advocates for a tougher smoking ordinance in Augusta showed up at Augusta Commission committee meetings Monday, but its sponsor said they were two weeks early. ... Corey Johnson, who will sponsor it, said it will actually be in the second round of committee meetings in October, which would start Oct. 28."

That's three weeks, not two.

Little Lamb
46392
Points
Little Lamb 10/08/13 - 09:20 am
1
1
Details

The devil is in the details. I wish we could learn in the paper what the proposal says before the committee meetings. What does Tom Corwin mean when he says, “The ordinance proposed last year would have added . . . most other public places to that, but the commission voted it down?”

Little Lamb
46392
Points
Little Lamb 10/08/13 - 09:27 am
3
2
Just Wait

From the story:

Kirk Miller, the Georgia grassroots manager for American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, said “This is not a ban on smoking. This is not an attempt to vilify smokers. What we’re looking to do is ask the people who smoke that they take it outside.”

In the first place, they are not asking smokers to "take it outside," they are forcing them under penalty of fine and/or imprisonment.

And in the second place, they are saying outdoors is okay for now, but next year they'll be back to ban outdoor smoking.

aintryt
189
Points
aintryt 10/08/13 - 09:39 am
3
2
NEWSFLASH - most bartenders

NEWSFLASH - most bartenders DO smoke so don't make this about protecting the workers - the non-smoking ones have a CHOICE not to work in a smoke environment and patrons have a CHOICE not to go into a bar that allows smoking. Current owners of bars have the CHOICE to go non-smoking anytime they wish and don't need an ordinance to make that change. I probably ingest more "poison" passing by the paper plant or one of numerous chemical plants. This overzealous nanny county is really going downhill and I can't WAIT to bust out of this oppressive town (and take all of my expendable cash with me)

bdouglas
5131
Points
bdouglas 10/08/13 - 10:27 am
2
2
Maybe all these places can

Maybe all these places can continue to allow smoking if they all got those fancy air handling systems that the TEE Center got that changes the air out 9 times in an hour...

Dixieman
15306
Points
Dixieman 10/08/13 - 08:32 pm
3
1
We have limited government

Or used to.
I want government at all levels to defend our country from attack, maintain law and order, and enforce contracts. Period.
I do not want it to tell me the skin color of people I am allowed to hire, where my children must go to school, what I may or may not do in my bedroom with another consenting adult, what I must pay my employees even if they and I are agreed on a different figure, what price I may charge for what I sell, etc. etc. etc. ad nauseam. And I find government trying to force choices on what to eat, drink or smoke on me and others highly offensive.
Commissioners: This is not what we hired you on to do. Back off.

oldredneckman96
5095
Points
oldredneckman96 10/08/13 - 08:44 pm
1
2
Addiction
Unpublished

Addiction. It is real easy to see who is addicted to nicotine and who is not by the opinions expressed every time an article about tobacco comes out. This addiction distorts the logic of the tobacco uses almost as bad as that of heroin, meth or cocaine. You do not let a child or mentally handicapped person to make decisions on issues that will harm themselves or others for the same reason we should not even have to think about allowing people to use tobacco in public. Nicotine and its various delivery systems slowly kill anyone around when used as directed. Any questions? Any arguments from anyone not addicted?

Gage Creed
17376
Points
Gage Creed 10/08/13 - 09:31 pm
2
1
It's easy to see who is so

It's easy to see who is so full of themselves that their self-righteous indignation blinds them to the fact that they are oppressors...

Never smoked, chewed, dipped in my life... but I do understand that people have the right to operate a business within the bounds of the laws that are on the books... and if I don't like how they run their business.. I do not have to spend my money there..

Any arguments from anyone who fails to understand the rights of ownership?

Dixieman
15306
Points
Dixieman 10/08/13 - 09:44 pm
4
1
To oldredneckman96

Yeah, I used to smoke 2-3 packs a day, quit 30 years ago, still think smokers have rights.

Little Lamb
46392
Points
Little Lamb 10/08/13 - 10:37 pm
1
1
Electronic Cigarettes

Another absurd notion floating around in this proposed smoking ordinance is the intention to ban use of E-cigarettes in indoor areas, particularly, bars and restaurants.

E-cigarettes contain no tobacco. They emit no tobacco smoke. They do not emit the pungent (and, to me, foul) odor of cigarette tobacco smoke. They emit water vapor with a tiny, tiny, tiny amount of nicotine.

Nicotine is not the chemical that is responsible for the health problems caused by tobacco smoke. Those health problems come from a host of other chemicals in tobacco (commonly called "tar"). Nicotine is not a component of tar. Nicotine is habit-forming, but it does not cause lung cancer, mouth cancer, throat cancer, heart disease, circulatory disease, etc.

They need to strip E-cigarettes out of this proposed ordinance. Secondary E-cigarette smoke does not harm people.

oldredneckman96
5095
Points
oldredneckman96 10/09/13 - 07:14 pm
1
1
Smoker Rights?
Unpublished

Our laws protect the right to own a gun. It does not protect the right of gun owners to shoot randomly in public places like sidewalks or stores. While there is no such specific right mentioned in our law to own tobacco, there are laws many dealing with spreading posion in public. If you do not mind some criminal posioning your child while in public, I have no hope for you. We have banned many things in our lifetime, DDT, red dye #2, leaded gas, put converters on cars and no one complined because no one was addicted to those things. If you do not want people shooting smokers in pubic in self defence then we need to ban tobacco in public for the safey of smokers. It will come to this one day.

MichaelMcFadden
8
Points
MichaelMcFadden 10/11/13 - 02:08 am
0
0
Mental Illnesses etc...
Unpublished

Little Lamb, VERY well said! OldRed, you're the perfect example of what the Antismokers have created. I'd strongly recommend you seek help with your ASDS, AntiSmokers' Dysfunction Syndrome. See:

http://wispofsmoke.net/recovery.html

Now, as to the article, "This is not a smoking ban." Right. That pretty much sums up the honesty that is used by these advocates. How about Augusta forbids car driving or parking within the downtown area? It won't be a car ban -- people will just be asked to drive and park elsewhere and then take a pleasant stroll of a mile or so to where they're going. Healthier for them, healthier for those who won't have to breathe the deadly fumes of hundreds of cigarettes per hour spewing out of their tailpipes, and healthier for the little children who won't have their bodies ripped apart by 3,000 pound Detroit Death Machines.

See? Two can play at this game. I'll address the concerns about the gasses and poisons in a separate posting.

- MJM

MichaelMcFadden
8
Points
MichaelMcFadden 10/11/13 - 02:32 am
0
0
A note to the editors...
Unpublished

Interesting. I see you may still be censoring people who are willing to sign their real identities and locations while allowing anonymous comments to come through unscathed. Don't you see anything wrong with such a policy? Do you practice it in your print newspaper as well? You might do well to read the section on "Censorship" in my new book. See http://TobakkoNacht.com for more information on that if you wish. No need to publish this note: this is just to you. If it turns out your policy has changed I'll be adding a post explaining the toxicology and dosage factors of substances like arsenic in secondary smoke. Are you aware you'd have to sit in a smoking bar/restaurant for roughly 165,000 hours to ingest the same amount of arsenic you'd get in an ordinary pint of government-approved-as-safe tap water? Betcha didn't know that, now did you? You probably simply accepted, as RedMan does, that you're being "poisoned" -- because that's what the advocates have told you. Happy to share the details if you like although it's a bit too long for a public posting, but meanwhile, do you feel no twinges of responsibility at ALL in providing your trusting readership with such deliberately one-sided views on an issue? Does that practice extend to the other news you cover as well?

We'll see.... maybe things have changed there in the past two years.

- MJM

MichaelMcFadden
8
Points
MichaelMcFadden 10/11/13 - 06:15 pm
0
0
Thank you...
Unpublished

Just a note: my first posting above was hung up, which was what prompted the second posting. Censorship concerning this topic of discussion is not at all uncommon so my concern was warranted. A major Philadelphia daily newspaper ran an antismoking editorial just a week or so ago and was greeted with a number of critical observations on an allied message board and within 24 hours the entire board was wiped clean by a diligent censor and the comments area removed in order to avoid a repeat.

The Internet is the one area where those without big money to back a campaign can reach out to the wider public to share arguments and information on a "level playing field." Unfortunately, those with the power and money often find that their proclamations and arguments don't fare so well on such grounds of equality so there's a lot of pressure to remove this "last microphone of the people." Censorship of crudity, advertising, outright hatred, off-topic nonsense, and long diatribes is reasonable. Censorship of postings that simply disagree with established views should never be tolerated and should be exposed wherever it occurs.

- MJM

smartin1955
16
Points
smartin1955 10/11/13 - 09:38 am
1
1
I will no longer donate to Cancer Society
Unpublished

They use our donations for lobbying. They get money from pharma also. The pharma that sells patches and gums! The ACS made 9 MILLION dollars running Quitlines, where, when you call they tell you to go and get the patches and gums. The Cancer Society is the lobbying arm of Johnson and Johnson, the patch and gum salesmen, and the local "clean air" group, is ANYTHING but grassroots! They are funded to harass the City Council. They did the same thing in St Joseph and Poplar Bluff, Missouri, recently, and THOSE City Council members supported local businesses rather than pharma and federal funded lobbyists, in sheeps clothing!

smartin1955
16
Points
smartin1955 10/11/13 - 09:42 am
1
1
Corey Johnson
Unpublished

Have you not read the studies about the catastrophic business losses due to smoking bans! Call the City Council of Ofalun, Missouri and let them tell you about the nine businesses that closed. Call Casper, Wyoming City Council who, this year, repealed the ban in bars, due to business losses!
Cirey, WHY are you catering to these lobbyists??????

smartin1955
16
Points
smartin1955 10/11/13 - 11:28 am
0
0
Ban killing business in Sedalia, Missouri
Unpublished

Bar profits going up in smoke due to smoking ban (Headline)

Posted: Friday, September 27, 2013 11:34 pm | Updated: 12:55 am, Sat Sep 28, 2013.

Posted on September 27, 2013
Emily Jarrett
by Emily Jarrett

Nearly a month after Sedalia went smoke-free, some bar owners are saying the measure is costing them their livelihood.

During the public comments portion of Monday’s Sedalia City Council meeting, several owners and managers spoke against the ban, which prohibits smoking in all public places including bars and restaurants.

Gage Creed
17376
Points
Gage Creed 10/11/13 - 10:11 pm
0
0
Simply amazing... "Shoot a

Simply amazing...

"Shoot a couple of smokers on the sidewalk as you try to escape the fumes, site the “Stand your ground” law and lets see where that gets us." ...

"If you do not want people shooting smokers in pubic in self defence (sic) then we need to ban tobacco in public for the safey (sic) of smokers."

Sean?

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