A proposal to ban smoking in the downtown area of Providence, R.I. got a favorable vote in its second reading on Wednesday night, but a change in the tally has it appearing not as veto-proof as it did earlier this month.

The second vote was 8-5 in favor, a change from the 10-3 vote it received at its first reading. It’s an important development because Mayor Jorge Elorza has long promised to veto the bill, even though he generally supports it. To override the veto, the city council would need to have 10 votes in favor of it, something that now appears to be in question.

Complaints about the ban have been plentiful, with opponents calling it a flawed means to drive the homeless out of the area, while also tasking the police force with an additional matter to enforce when they are spread thin as is, in addition to straining relations between the department and the public.

The ban prohibits the use of all tobacco products and electronic smoking devices in the Kennedy Plaza and Burnside Park areas, as well as throughout the surrounding neighborhood, though private residences are exempt. Violators would be subject to a warning on their initial violation before being hit with a $50 fine for a second offense.

Providence is the capital of Rhode Island and home to roughly 180,000 people.

Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for MLB.com, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for Examiner.com, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.