After a night of debate, disagreement, amendments and revisions, a new smoking ban is coming to the city of Goshen, Ind.
The ban as presented at the start of the meeting had been sought to build on and tighten the state’s existing indoor clean air act, and will prohibit smoking in city parks and the outdoor dining areas of restaurants, though the latter with the exception that smoking will be allowed if the areas are restricted to persons at least 18-years-old. The use of electronic cigarettes and vaping devices have also been banned in places where smoking is currently prohibited.
As part of the compromises made during the debate, three bars in the city that currently allow smoking will be grandfathered in and can continue to allow smoking, even after the business is sold. Newly opened bars, however, and bars where smoking is not currently allowed, will not be able to allow smoking going forward. For cigar smokers, retail tobacco shops will still be able to allow customers to light up, as will vape shops.
A proposal to increase the non-smoking buffer around places where smoking is prohibited from eight feet to 15 feet was one of the most notable ideas that failed during the city council’s meeting.
The changes will go into effect immediately following publication of the finalized ordinance, though bars and taverns will be given until Jan. 1, 2019 to implement the ban, according to a report from GoshenNews.com.
Goshen is located in northern Indiana near the border with Michigan and has approximately 33,000 residents.