The American Lung Association is pushing a “Smoke Free at the Lake” campaign, and brought its agenda to the Lake Ozark Board of Aldermen meeting Tuesday night.

The American Lung Association is pushing a “Smoke Free at the Lake” campaign, and brought its agenda to the Lake Ozark Board of Aldermen meeting Tuesday night.

There was no specific proposal presented by Leah Martin, director of advocacy for the American Lung Association, who addressed the board during the public comments. She offered a packet of information that included a model ordinance prohibiting smoking in all workplaces and public places.

Martin, who owns Little Learners Play Center in Lake Ozark, said smoke-free laws have been enacted in 33 Missouri communities. On the list are Branson, Jefferson City, Sedalia and Springfield.

She and others who belong to the Smoke Free at the Lake Coalition have worked two years to get Lake-area communities to adopt some form of smoke-free laws. She said many visitors are surprised when they find that open smoking is still allowed at the Lake.

However, Rock Island Line owner Dean Nelson doesn’t support her efforts.

“People know that as soon as they open my door that I’m a smoking facility, and they don’t have to come in,” he said. “I don’t think I need to be pressured by somebody else to do that.”

 He said that events such as Bikefest, the Magic Dragon Car Show and Hot Summer Nights could be lost to Osage Beach if smoking is banned in Lake Ozark.

“If the majority of people want it, that’s fine. But I don’t believe politicians should tell us what we can and can’t do,” he said.

He hopes that if a smoking ban is implemented, he’ll at least be allowed to establish a smoking zone outside his bar.

Sewer issues

The board concurred with a management decision to buy two grinder pumps as the result of an emergency situation over the July 4th weekend.

Public Works Director Matt Michalik said a lift station pump failed, and a backup failed within 24 hours. The pumps, more than 15 years old, have been rebuilt and repaired several times, Michalik said. A backup 35 horsepower pump was installed after some last-minute wiring repair to carry the load of three pumps.

“We simply can’t have this pump station running on one pump (it houses three pumps) since it conveys all of the wastewater from the North Shore area to the water treatment plant,” he explained. “If there’s a complete failure of the pump station, wastewater would overflow near the Osage National Golf Course.”

The board concurred with the purchase of two pumps under the city’s emergency purchase clause at a cost of $57,827.

The equipment was to be purchased later as part of a larger sewer improvement project.