Electronic cigarettes made headlines in Blount County Monday.
The School District changed its policy and will now ban e-cigarettes from school campuses and buses. It's bringing to light the debate about e-cigarettes in public places.
Both Blount and Cumberland County schools are banning e-cigarettes, but there are also talks of banning them at restaurants.
Restaurant owners and managers said similar things; it's good people are quitting cigarettes, but it's hard to ban them without any regulation. They say there is a tipping point with the devices.
Latitude 35 has been smoke-free inside since it opened four years ago.
Manager Barry Garner said his goal is to create a clean environment to eat and drink. He feels they do that without cigarettes, and thinks banning e-cigarettes may be a thing in the future. He cites a couple reasons: there are a lot of unknowns when it comes to health, and they could be a nuisance to visitors.
"If a customer came up to complain about it I would go up to the person and kindly ask them to put it away or go outside to do it," said Garner.
He said if or when the ban comes, it would have similar impacts to the original cigarette ban.
"Just like when the first cigarette ban went in, everybody shifted to where you can go smoke, and all my regulars shifted to a bar you don't smoke, it eventually became old news and everybody didn't think about it and started coming back to where they originally were, and would just go outside to smoke," he said.
Down the road, Josh Turbyville is preparing to open up Clancy's Tavern on Tuesday. Already, the no smoking signs are up. However, there is no restriction on e-cigarettes.
"We have had a few soft openings and have seen a couple people with them and haven't gotten complaints. But if we have a bar full of e-cigarettes and everyone is lighting up, that might become an issue. Right now we will take it one e-cigarette at a time," said Turbyville.
He said he has been told Irish pubs usually allow smoking, but Turbyville isn't willing to allow it. He also wants to know more about the possible dangers that come with e-cigarettes.
"In a perfect world I would rather that nobody smoked, but you know if they are going to smoke these cigarettes inside, I prefer they don't do it in front of somebody's face. Maybe they can pick an area where there is not as big of a crowd," said Turbyville.
The general manager at Wild Wing Cafe said they have an e-cigarette club that comes into his restaurant. He tells them upfront, once anyone complains, the e-cigarettes have to go. Showing that there is a lot of consensus that it is a case-by-case basis.