SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- A judge held the first hearing on Thursday for a lawsuit that aims to stop the city's voter-approved smoking ban. The owner of Ruthie's Bar on Commercial Street is trying to overturn it.
Both sides agreed to have another hearing next week to allow the city more time to prepare for arguments. The plaintiff believes she has a good shot at winning the whole thing.
"My mother and my aunt opened this bar in the late 1970s," said Ruthie's Bar owner Jeannie Doublin.
Doublin's family has been in the bar business for a while.
"When she retired in 1999, I took it over."
She now fears that the era of Ruthie's Bar could be coming to an end.
"I think they are going to put a lot of places, a lot of little places like this, out of business," she said Thursday morning before the hearing.
The heart of the issue is the ban on smoking in most enclosed public spaces, some outdoor places like playgrounds, and many company vehicles that voters passed in April. Its effective date is set to be June 11.