Savannah City Council voted Thursday to ban smoking in all bars, restaurants, and other public buildings.
The new ordinance takes effect January 1st and will require smokers to keep 10 feet from business entrances.
Alderman Clifton Jones voted against the proposal. He says it will hurt local businesses and take away their choice to allow consumption of a legal product.
“I believe it would have an impact on revenue in the city based on some of the correspondence I’ve received indicating that if the ban was passed that they will no longer frequent Savannah," Alderman Jones says. "And we depend heavily on tourists and taxes that they pay.”
Savannah joins a host of other counties and cities across the state in its smoke-free initiative. Athens-Clarke County, Gainesville, and Snellville have all outlawed smoking in bars.