Voters Approve Public Smoking Ban, Reject School Proposal in West Plains
West Plains’ voters Tuesday rejected a tax increase for school district upgrades while approving a measure to ban smoking in enclosed placed of emolument public areas.
Mallory Hawkins is the city clerk and public relations director for the city.
“This means that smoking will be prohibited in public places and public work places inside West Plains.”
Hawkins adds this means designated smoking sections in restaurants will no longer be allowed. However, the new law does not interfere with cigar, cigarette, or tobacco shops where these items make up more than 80 percent of total income. It also does not interfere with places liquor establishments that get less than 10 percent of their total income comes from food sales.
Other exemptions include taxi services and limousines for hire if all passengers and the driver consent to smoking, inside privately owned residences that are not used as child daycare facilities, not more than 20 percent hotel rooms, and stage performers that are using smoking as part of a theatrical production.
According to Hawkins, West Plains is “looking towards the future with progression and educating our citizens on the harmful effects of second-hand smoke,” and she believes this will make West Plains a “healthier community.”
Unofficial final results show 71 percent of voters approved the smoking ban, while 61 percent of citizens that cast a ballot Tuesday said no to the school measure.
The West Plains School District was asking for a nearly $1 increase on its operating tax levy ceiling to $4.5950 per $100 of assessed valuation, to be applied through 2035. If approved, the additional funding would have provided funds for the upgrades at the high school campus, including two new classrooms, and a multipurpose space at the South Fork Elementary School.
View other election results from area counties below: