PROSPERITY — Prosperity residents and business owners addressed town council about the possibility of the town going smoke free.
Representatives from two major restaurants in town — Roma’s and Chase’s on Grace — said they believe that either the decision should be left to a business owner to be smoke free or how one restaurant has a closed off bar where smokers can go and children aren’t allowed.
Marlene Spurgin with the Prosperity Business Association expressed concern over the restaurant owners’ rights. She said she she wants someone to represent them when workshops are held to present their viewpoints.
Dr. Oscar Lovelace also spoke about how tobacco is a Class A carcinogen and scientists do not know if there is a safe level of tobacco level.
“A person’s right stops when it infringes on another’s rights,” said Lovelace.
Doug Outlaw from Smoke Free SC spoke about his organization and told council how 56 municipalities have adopted a smoke free policy.
“Approximately 6,100 die from smoking each year in South Carolina and (more than) 720 don’t smoke,” he said.
He advocated a comprehensive smoking policy so. He said they do have testimonials from business owners who were hesitant about the smoke free policy but claim it was a good move.
He cited a USC phone call survey of the county that showed 65 percent of respondents would support going smoke free in the county while 29 percent were opposed.
“We will have formal workshops for all to participate in,” Mayor Derik Underwood said.
In other business, Nick Long from Boy Scouts Troop 222 told council he is looking for an Eagle Scout project. He wants to help put up a barricade between the sidewalk and playground outside town hall to prevent people from driving through the playground, which has been a problem.
Council approved a motion for Long to proceed. Now Long has to get approval from the Boy Scouts.
Also, First Community Bank has offered space on its property for the town to put a Prosperity welcome sign. The town will utilize local artists and will contact the bank about using the old clock from the bank in the sign.