Gloverville businessman smoking mad at ban

By: Lynnsey Gardner Email
By: Lynnsey Gardner Email

News 12 at 11, June 10, 2007

GLOVERVILLE, SC-- A Gloverville business owner is smoking mad after the Aiken County Council passed a smoking ban that went into effect on the first of the month. Now he is taking his message to the street.

At Gloverville's Midway Grill, the message is clear. Council members should butt out of their business. And to make the point, owner Bill Hamilton posted a message on the sign that reads "No Smoking No Council Members."

"I'm a hundred percent deadly serious. I don't want their business. I don't need their business." says Hamilton.

A smoker himself, he says it's not about the inconvenience of having to light up outside. Instead he says he fears what precedence the ban will set. "The biggest issue with this is they are telling me what I can and cannot do with my business and that bothers me. It's my business today and tomorrow it'll be my home."

And his message doesn't stop with the sign by the road. On the doors, a no smoking sign, followed by "You can thank your Aiken County Council." And "Remember these folks at election time."

It's a message even his non smoking customers appreciate. "I think it's a hoot and I’m really glad that he did that." Says Wanda Braxton.

"Yeah I'd boot them out too, if they want to pass no smoking, then don't serve them. It's the same kind of deal ain't it? It's what's fair." adds Jeffrey Gentry.

Hamilton says it's still not clear whether he'll lose money from the smoke-out, but until there's a state wide mandated smoking ban,
council members will have to wait until the smoke clears before being welcomed back.

Hamilton says he would like to see the measure put before the state house and voted on. Right now, the smoking ban affects the unincorporated areas of Aiken County. So far the larger cities, like Aiken and North Augusta have not yet adopted a ban of their own

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  • by The Aiken Hornet Location: South Aiken on Jun 11, 2007 at 02:38 PM
    It is his business. County Council is going to wast hundreds of thousands of dollars when they are ultimately sued over this issue. And the will lose. SC state law does not allow local government's to impose local laws that are inconsistent with state law. Aiken County Council is a joke for having passed this when their own County Attorney told them it was illegal. Michael Hunt does not have enough deputies to enforce this expansion of big gvernment into our lives. Remind yourself that the crowd who tells you that you cannot smoke inside also prevents you from buying a rake before 1:30 P.M. on Sunday. Of course you can buy beer, cigarettes, lottery tickets - you know - the essentials. We need big change at the County level.
  • by Lynna Location: Aiken on Jun 11, 2007 at 11:42 AM
    The State wide smoking ban is just around the corner. This man is fighting a losing battle, while he could be saving the lives of some young people who may work for him.
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