Milwaukee's e-cig ban includes bars and restaurants

Posted at 10:38 PM, Jun 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-22 23:38:33-04

MILWAUKEE -- An e-cigarette ban unanimously passed by Milwaukee's common council would also apply in restaurants and bars. Anywhere smoking is prohibited, e-cigs will also no longer be allowed. 

"They stink," said Stuart Smith of Milwaukee. 

Smith is all for the ban. 

"I don't think it's overboard," he said. "If you go to a restaurant or a tavern, you want to relax, not have someone blow that steam at your face." 

Miles Johnson doesn't see the harm. 

"I feel like they should be considerate of people who do use it," Johnson said.  

Alderman Michael Murphy proposed the change.  

"I think it will improve the overall health in the community," he said.  

Murphy said e-cigs are a health concern, even second-hand. 

"It's just not water vapor, it contains some heavy metals and other contaminants that are carcinogenic including formaldehyde," Murphy said.

"I kind of say hogwash," said Wisco Vapes manager Jody Courchaine. "I don't agree with that," 

Courchaine doesn't believe that's accurate.  

"The vapor production that comes out of these units, the minute you blow it out it already starts dissipating," said Courchaine. 

Aside from bars and restaurants, the new ordinance also includes vape shops. Courchaine believes the measure would hurt his business. 

"Nobody wants to come in here and take a wild guess at a flavor," he said. 

All this ordinance needs is Mayor Barrett's signature. Murphy said the mayor plans to sign it soon. It would go into effect 30 days later. Fines would start at $100.