In a five-to-one decision on Monday night, the Leitchfield City Council voted to draft an ordinance that will ban smoking inside all public places within the City of Leitchfield.
The City Council met in regular session on Monday night, March 21 and discussed the city-wide smoking issue and listened to community members’ arguments either for or against the ban.
Citizens who opposed the smoking ban said they felt the government should not tell private business owners what they can and cannot do in their businesses.
Leitchfield City Councilmember William Dallas said that, while the public may have the right to choose whether to go into a business that allows smoking, an employee may not.
City Councilmember Raymond “Tooty”Cottrell noted that a business could decide whether to allow smoking, but Dallas said that does not protect the worker whom may be unable to find a job other than in a place that allows smoking.
“The main goal here…is to protect the children,” City Councilmember Margaret Fey said of the smoke-free ordinance.
Fey also said that until Twin Lakes Regional Medical Center (TLRMC) representatives provided her with a packet detailing the dangers of smoking and secondhand smoke exposure, she didn’t realize the harm of secondhand smoke.
“There is no one who can tell me this isn’t a health issue,” said Dallas.
After the discussion, Leitchfield City Councilmember Kelly Stevenson made the motion to have the City Council draft a city-wide smoke-free ordinance.
City Councilmember Harold Miller seconded the motion, which passed on a five-to-one vote, with Cottrell voting against it.
According to Leitchfield Mayor William Thomason, smoking will not be illegal in public places, such as restaurants and businesses, that allow it until the official ordinance is drafted and approved by the City Council.
The City Council will decide what constitutes a public place and also how far away from a public place an individual must be in order to smoke without violating the ordinance, among other elements of the ordinance.
In other business:
*Thomason presented small keys to the City of Leitchfield to members of the visiting Boy Scout Troop #135 to wear on their lapels.
*The City Council voted to support the Grayson County Chamber of Commerce’s initiative to improve Grayson County from a “Work Ready in Progress Community” to a full-fledged “Work Ready Community.”
The Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors will host a leaders’ meeting on Thursday, April 28 to plan for how to make this initiative a success, and, so far, the Cities of Caneyville and Clarkson, as well as the Chamber Board of Directors and TLRMC Board of Directors have also committed to participate.
*The City Council granted approval for Ed and Minde Ramos to use the Leitchfield Aquatic Center parking lot on April 17 for a trial run for their Loud Stereo Contests, which they hope to move from Elizabethtown to primarily Grayson County.
Ed and Minde Ramos are originally from Grayson County and are looking to move permanently back to Grayson County within two or three years.
Consequently, they said they would like to begin holding the bulk of their Loud Stereo Contests in Grayson County.
The City Council also granted approval for Ed and Minde Ramos to hold a Loud Stereo Contest in Leitchfield on May 15, as well.
*Dallas said there was a great turnout for softball sign-ups, and anyone who still wishes to sign up for girls softball and has not yet done so should as soon as possible.
*The City Council voted to place a proclamation declaring March 2016 National Middle Level Education Month into its meeting minutes.
Reach Matt Lasley at 270-259-9622, ext. 2015.