St. Charles City is one step closer to crafting a smoking ban of some sorts. The question is whether there will be any exemptions. The city heard input from citizens Monday night during the 3rd and final public hearing on the issue. Some citizens argue smoking is a health issue while others argued that it's about personal rights and a level playing field.
St. Charles Mayor Sally Faith favors a ban that would exempt the Ameristar Casino because the city receives a large portion of its revenue from the casino. She says in 2012 the casino provided an estimated $13 million in revenue for city services.
Ameristar officials say a smoking ban would put them at a disadvantage competing against other casinos in the area.
Several owners of other local businesses oppose the casino exemption. They argue that its unfair to require most businesses to comply but give Ameristar a pass.