Wednesday, April 24, 2013
A proposed bill that would hand out penalties to cities or counties that enforce smoking bans would take money away from those towns and pump it into the local public school district.
More smoking ban news is making headlines—this time on a statewide level. State Rep. Kathie Conway, R-St. Charles, is pushing a bill through the state legislature that would place financial penalties on local counties and cities that enforce smoking bans. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Conay is trying to protect the rights of owners of bars, restaurants and other businesses to decide for themselves whether to allow smoking. “If these municipalities and counties are going to hurt the income of small businesses, maybe their bottom line should be affected as well,” she told the Post-Dispatch. Money generated from the bill—Hosue Bill 1021—would be handed over to the local school district. The bill faces fierce opposition from …
Thursday, September 27, 2012
According to St. Louis Post-Dispatch article, Circuit Judge Ted House threw out the ballot measure.
St. Charles County voters won't have the chance to vote on a smoking ban in November after Circuit Judge Ted House decided Tuesday to pull the measure off the ballot. Anti-smoking advocate Don Young filed suit against St. Charles County Elections Director Rich Chrismer after Chrismer decided to pull the measure from the ballot. House sided with Chrismer, who argued that the wording in the ballot language was inconsistent, according to an article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. "House said the council did not follow proper procedure to get it on the ballot." Read the full Post-Dispatch story here.
Monday, September 17, 2012
Councilman Joe Cronin called a second version with exceptions "weak and watered down."
(The following press release was issued by the St. Charles County Council.) The St. Charles County Council, at a special meeting Saturday morning, decided to stand by its original bill calling for a charter amendment in the form of a ballot proposition concerning a countywide ban on smoking in enclosed public places. The Council considered a new bill that would have changed the ballot language to merge the smoking ban with three exceptions: places requiring patrons and employees to be age at least 21 years of age, private clubs, and 20 percent of hotel rooms. Councilman Joe Cronin, the sponsor of both the original and second bill, said the Council did a lot of “soul-searching” and came to the conclusion that passing “something that was …
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
St. Charles County Council approved placing a smoking ban on the Nov. 6 ballot. County Executive Steve Ehlmann said he planned to sign it.
Voters will have the chance to vote on a county-wide smoking ban at all indoor establishments Nov. 6. The ballot will ask voters to consider banning smoking in all enclosed indoor places. Then voters would be asked to vote on providing an exemption for private clubs, veterans organizations and establishments that serve and employ people age 21 and up. The bill passed on a 4-2 vote, with County Council members Joe Cronin, Nancy Matheny, Terry Hollander and Joe White voting in favor of the bill. Councilman Jerry Daugherty and Joe Brazil voted against the bill. Councilman Paul Wynn was present by phone and unable to vote. Matheny has changed her mind on the smoking ban bill in the three times it has come before the council. In the past, …
Friday, August 24, 2012
Organizer Carl Bearden says he'll sue to keep another smoking ban proposed by County Councilman Joe Cronin off the November ballot.
The St. Charles County smoking ban petition backed by Ameristar Casino will not appear on the Nov. 6 ballot because the petitioners did not obtain enough valid signatures, the St. Charles Election Authority reported. Petitioners needed at least 18,535 valid signatures and the Election Authority found that just 14,801 signatures were valid, said Rich Chrismer, director of the election authority. Many of the signatures turned in either were not registered voters, included a wrong address or were duplicates, Chrismer said. The petition drive was organized by Carl Bearden, a former state Representative for St. Charles County. It would have offered exemptions to businesses that cater to people over age 21, to the casino, and to businesses …
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Councilman Joe Cronin, District 1, introduces a bill to place smoking ban before voters. Another smoking ban amendment has been proposed by a political action committee funded by Ameristar Casino.
St. Charles County voters may get the chance to vote on two different proposed smoking bans this fall, one of which is backed by Ameristar Casino, another proposed by a councilman. County Councilman Joe Cronin, R-district 1, introduced a bill on Monday that puts the smoking ban before voters on the Nov. 6 ballot. His bill includes exemptions for casinos, private residences, private clubs with no employees and retail tobacco stores. This is his third time trying to place a smoking ban on a ballot. (Read about his earlier efforts here and here). Cronin said the bill is modeled after an earlier bill that was vetoed by County Executive Steve Ehlmann, with a few changes. He said he was prompted to propose it again to give voters a choice in …
Council members offered thoughts on a proposed ban introduced by Councilman Joe Cronin that would put the matter before voters Nov. 6.
St. Charles County Council members weighed in on Councilman Joe Cronin's third attempt at getting a countywide smoking ban placed on the Nov. 6 ballot. Cronin's proposed ban includes exemptions for Ameristar Casino, private residences, private clubs with no employees and retail tobacco stores. Read more about his proposal here. Council member Nancy Matheny, District 3, said the council will spend the next two weeks discussing whether they can come to an agreement on what types of exemptions should be included in the bill. "We have six members of the County Council that are present and Paul Wynn who is present by phone," she said. "Everyone is in a different place on this continuum... Our goal will be to find out if we can get four (votes) …
Saturday, August 11, 2012
Stricter smoking bans in Lake Saint Louis and O'Fallon would remain in effect under the compromise ban.
The St. Louis Post-Distpatch reported Friday that a petition campaign for a compromise smoking ban that would exempt certain businesses has turned in 22,850 signatures asking for a November vote. The ban would allow smoking in businesses with a 21-and-over clientele and businesses with a separate smoking area. Stricter smoking bans already adopted by Lake Saint Louis and O'Fallon would remain in effect. Smoke Free St. Charles County, an anti-smoking coalition, considers the compromise ban a step backward, KMOV.com reported on Aug. 9. Members of the coalition believe the petition's title was misleading. The petition drive was financed by Ameristar Casinos, one of the businesses that would be exempted if the ban were to be approved by voters…
Sunday, May 6, 2012
House Bill 2103 would exempt businesses with at least 60 percent retail sales from alcohol, tobacco or entertainment from local smoking bans.
Sunday, May 6, 2012
Editor's Note: Letters to the Editor are welcomed by Patch. The opinions expressed in letters are only that of the letter writer and do not represent Patch. The letters solely represent the views of the author and have not been edited other than to check for spelling error. If you would like to submit a letter to the editor, please review our guidelines here. To the Editor: A current Missouri legislative bill co-sponsored by Rep. Kathie Conway (R-St. Charles County) would compromise the health and safety of Missouri citizens as well as prevent them from determining what is best for their local communities. This bill would prohibit Missouri cities and counties from banning smoking in establishments where at least 60 percent of sales come …
Friday, March 23, 2012
Two groups work toward placing a some form of a smoking ban before St. Charles County voters in November.
Efforts to place before St. Charles County voters some form of countywide smoking ban may be catching fire again. A number of bar owners and restaurants are considering starting an initiative petition drive to place a ban on the Nov. 6 ballot. But if approved, the measure—an amendment to the county charter—would be less restrictive than a ban suggested by a local anti-smoking coalition. That coalition has also discussed mounting its own initiative petition drive that would place a stricter ban on the same ballot. They discussed this after the St. Charles County Council deadlocked 3-3 on a ballot measure on Nov. 28. Two council members also say they may sponsor new bills—one that could be filed as early as April—to let voters decide on some…