Mayor Winnecke speaks out about overturned smoking ban
By Brandon Bartlett, Anchor/Reporter - bio | email
Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke says he's open to going back to the drawing board when it comes to the city's smoking ban.
Winnecke says he's already had a few conversations with City Council President John Friend about what, if anything, to do next.
The mayor tells 14 News that he's willing to sit down and look at different options for a new ordinance.
But one big question is- How would the Tropicana riverboat be treated in that ordinance?
Under the ban that was overturned this week, only the riverboat was exempt. Many bar owners claimed that was unfair.
Winnecke says the riverboat is a large revenue stream for the city, and if it were to lose business under a smoking ban, the city also stands to lose a lot of money.
"If we were to go in and ban smoking there, I think you'd have to go back and look at the testimony that the casino folks brought to us at that time and they predicted a dramatic decrease in business if smoking is banned. I'm taking them at their word. If that's the case, it would be detrimental to the city and to the county. Whatever we do going forward I think we need to do that with that thought in mind," Winnecke says.
The mayor says he will continue to have discussions with members of the city council to see if a new ordinance is in the city's best interest.