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Bloomington smoking ban re-vote cancelled
Bloomington Alderman Allen Gibson has withdrawn his request that a total repeal of the city’s public smoking ordinance be placed on the council agenda for June 25.

BLOOMINGTON - A request to reconsider the city's smoking ban has been withdrawn. Alderman Allen Gibson withdrew his request for a new vote when the Bloomington City Council meets Monday.

"It was my decision to pull it," Gibson said.

Gibson said his intention was an "up or down vote" and he did not intend for the discussion to be reopened.

"There was no sense wasting any more of the council's time listening to all the arguments again," Gibson said.

He said he has not seen any support for repealing the ban since asking earlier this month for the vote to be placed on Monday's agenda.

"There is not any general support for it" on the council, Gibson said. "And I didn't get good feedback from the public."

Several aldermen last week said they would not vote for the repeal. Aldermen Karen Schmidt and Jim Finnegan originally voted against the ban but said they did not want it repealed.

At the council's June 11 meeting, Gibson said he wanted a new vote taken on the city's ordinance that limits smoking indoors in public places, including taverns and restaurants. The ordinance took effect Jan. 1, in tandem with a similar ordinance approved by the Normal City

Council.

State ban awaits signature

A state ban that would begin next Jan. 1 is waiting for the governor's signature. The state law would supersede any city ordinances on smoking.

Mayor Steve Stockton said he has received a lot of comments since the June 11 meeting on the topic. Some tavern and restaurant owners have told him they do not want to switch back to smoking, only to have to reimpose a ban a few months later to comply with the state law.

"So I appreciate Alderman Gibson's withdrawal," Stockton added.

Gibson said he wanted to clear the city's books of the ordinance because he did not want to see two ordinances, the city's and the state's.

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