Surfside Beach smoking ban in effect

$100 fines are supposed to be in place November 1st for anyone smoking in Surfside Beach, and several business owners tell NewsChannel 15, they're suffering from it.

NewsChannel 15 is told those business owners are still trying to get an injunction against the smoking ban. Surfside Beach Town Clerk, Sharon Pinnell said the town does have a copy of that injunction, but it has not been signed by a judge. So until it is, the smoking ban will be enforced.

Karen Davis works at the Sundown Restaurant and Sports Pub and says it's usually busy on Thursday afternoons. "Thursday is our spaghetti day and we're normally packed."

Davis blamed the empty chairs on the smoking ban. Businesses had 30 days to warn smokers about it, and the ordinance passed by Surfside Beach Town Council set November 1st as the date violators would be fined.

But NewsChannel 15 learned Wednesday night that several bar owners, including the owner of the Sundown Restaurant, had hired an attorney and were trying to get a hearing for an injunction against enforcement of the ban. But that hasn't happened yet.

So for now, ashtrays are tucked away and customers scarce. "You can see what it's done to our business. It's the first official day and we have no one here."

Over at Surfside Live, owner Shawn Croley said he's waiting for more information regarding penalties and fines, and like others, he's not sure what to do now.

"We're going to do what we can. I'm certainly not going to make anyone not smoke, I'll put it that way."

Besides this concern business owners might have another debate on their hands. Right now there are several businesses that serve alcohol that are open around the clock. Now we're told there's talk of having them close at 2 a-m.

Click on the website below for a link to the Surfside Beach smoking ban ordinance.