Elkhart To Tackle Smoking Ban in July

The city council in Elkhart may find itself creating some "fireworks" this July.

That is when the council will likely consider a city-wide ordinance to ban smoking in public places.

The councilman who is sponsoring the measure, Ron Troyer, says "right now, the ordinance is in the final stages of being drafted in the legal department."

The push to ban smoking in public places began in Elkhart County in April when the city of Goshen passed an ordinance that takes effect September 1st.

For some, the ultimate goal of the town-by-town approach is to provide the pressure needed to win a county-wide smoking ban for Elkhart County.

"It should be county-wide," said Elkhart Mayor David Miller.
"It ought to be statewide. It ought to be nationwide, so people don't have different rules for different places."

That's not to say everyone is sure the time is right to tackle the smoking issue in the city of Elkhart.

The Main Street Café is still hurting from a Main Street reconstruction project.

Months and months worth of work on the road made it tough for customers to reach the diner.

"I have a lot of smoking customers," said Main Street Café owner Julie Pietrzak: "they're very loyal and when times were tough with the road being closed and all the construction on Main Street, that's the only way I survived."

Meantime, Council Ron Troyer feels the time is right, and he says he will sponsor the measure. "Sure I expect some opposition on this but I don't go into it worrying about opposition. This is a quality and health and a life issue."

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