Ardmore speaks out against proposed statewide smoking ban

By: Teddy Safo Email
By: Teddy Safo Email

ARDMORE, Okla. -- An Oklahoma State Senate Committee has signed off on a proposal that bans smoking in bars and restaurants. Bar owners we spoke with say if the bill goes into law, it would kill their business, and as Teddy Safo reports, restaurant owners say the current law is fine the way it is.

The state proposal to prohibit smoking in bars and restaurants does not sit too well with Ardmore business owner Buddy Simon. Not long ago, Simon spent several thousands of dollars to build a state approved smoking area for his patrons who do smoke.

"I don’t know how much, how fair it is, but I know there’s obviously not going to be a check coming to us to rebate us for becoming compliant for our last law," Simon, who owns Budro’s Restaurant, says.

In 2003, Oklahoma lawmakers banned smoking in most places, but they did make some exceptions. For instance, smoking is still legal in facilities with a designated smoking area. Simon thinks the newest proposal could have a negative effect on his business.

"Although the people who do consume cigarettes and tobacco products will probably have a problem with it, and it lessens our ability to raise an honest dollar."

Patrons like Barbara Meadows say they do not agree with the proposed legislation either.

"It’s totally ridiculous. Even smokers have rights. I dint see why another person should tell another person what to do," Meadows says.

Both Simon and Meadows say this proposal is unnecessary.

"I think it’s good enough the way it is. We take care of all our clientele. We have people who come to our non-smoking area and people to our smoking area," Simon says.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Mr. F Location: Ardmore on Feb 27, 2009 at 07:23 AM
    My wife and I enjoy places like Budros, because they have great food, good prices, wonerful staff and YES, a smoking section. We can go enjoy a nice meal in a grownup section without all the babies whininng, crying and stinking diapers. That alone is well worth a smoking section. We are over 18 and are paying extra taxes because we are smokers, so the state needs to remember where they are getting a few extra dollars and should pay attention to other issues besides who may smoke in the few places that are still left to do so. There are many other restaurants non smokers can go to and wait staff can work at if they choose to...funny... I am having my right to choose taken from me more and more.
  • by LM in Ardmore Location: Ardmore on Feb 27, 2009 at 06:50 AM
    One, to each of you that complain about smoking...I bet you are outside with all the vehicles that belch more poisons than a smoker! There are many other places you can go and enjoy smoke free and many are all Corp owned..ps,great way to support your local business! Two, my Husband and I eat out and we will only go to Budros because they are locally owned, did the renovations to ensure their whole customer base will have enjoyable experience. The restaurants that did take the extra steps to please all their customers should not have to worry that the State is going to step in and change the rules again and believe me, I have seen it first hand and experienced it with having owned a business, don't under estimate the dollar power of smokers!
  • by Fred Location: Oklahoma on Feb 23, 2008 at 09:33 PM
    I hate cigarette smoke, they should ban it. There are still a lot of people who have to work with smokers, and their nothing you can do about it. People who smoke around children, don't care what the smoke may be doing to them. If their not going to stop it they should tax it more.
  • by JC Location: Denison on Feb 21, 2008 at 10:53 AM
    I'm sure smokers in Oklahoma City aren't going to drive to Kansas, Texas or Arkansas for dinner so they can smoke.
  • by MW Location: Sherman on Feb 21, 2008 at 10:30 AM
    I am a non-smoker. I don't like to eat anywhere that there is smoking or be around it. I know that everyone has rights, but if people who smoke choose to kill or pollute "theirselves" that's their choice, but they don't have the right to pollute me with 2nd hand smoke. Granted it may hurt some businesses, but I don't think so. I do feel for those businesses that have spend $$ to comply with current laws of separate eating areas for smoking/non-smoking. If the law changes to ban smoking all together, I think those businesses need to be reimbursed for some of their $$. If everyone would just quit smoking anyway - the world would be a whole lot better off and those smokers would be healthier.
  • by JC Location: Denison on Feb 21, 2008 at 09:50 AM
    Plano went smoke free years ago and business has exploded...just wait and see
  • by Anonymous on Feb 21, 2008 at 09:36 AM
    As a non-smoker I wish all public places would be smoke free! It is not fair that we have to breath in contaminated air and suffer because of someone else's addiction. And I do agree that the government needs to look at other things as well like illegal drug use, smoking is a problem! If you like to smoke, smoke outside or at home. While you are in public, you have to consider how everyone around you feels. Don't impose your bad habits on innocent people and especially children!
  • by Anonymous on Feb 21, 2008 at 09:36 AM
    I don't eat out in restaurants that allow smoking because the cigarette smoke gives me a bad headache... and it seems like the hostess always leads you right through the smoking section to get to the nonsmoking. Nasty. Smokers have rights, but what about the rights of non-smokers?
  • by audrey Location: gainesville on Feb 21, 2008 at 09:27 AM
    I totally agree with JB of Ardmore the law should be more worried abould all the criminal activity going on around the world instead of smoking habits.
  • by Mom Location: Ok on Feb 21, 2008 at 08:52 AM
    I don't like going any place that allows smoking in the building. The smoke drifts we all stink afterwards. My youngest has asthma. He is very allergic to smoke. It is amazing how many rude people smoke in the stands at football games, or right in front of the door of a business. Their smoking can kill my son. I would love to be able to go out to eat at a place that banned all smoking even outside. That would be great.
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