Heading into Monday night’s city council meeting in Conway, S.C., there didn’t seem to be a consensus as to whether or not a proposed smoking ban that would ban smoking in all private businesses with just a few exceptions could make it past its first vote. But after numerous public comments, the council voted 4-2 in favor of it, moving it one step closer to becoming law in the city of just under 20,000 residents.
The ordinance, as it went into Monday night’s meeting, provides exemptions for tobacco stores, cigar bars and hotels, as long as the establishments have proper ventilation systems. It now must go to a second reading and vote before it would become law.
If it gets a second affirmative vote, violators would be fined $100 and business owners would face penalties for allowing smoking in their establishments. The ordinance also requires that smokers be at least five feet from the entrance to a building or store before lighting up, according to numerous reports. An official copy of the ordinance has not been posted on the city’s website.
Conway is located about 100 miles northeast of Charleston and 15 miles northwest of Myrtle Beach. It has a population of approximately 19,300.