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City Council restricts tobacco and e-cigarette products

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The City of Guthrie is joining the list of cities and schools that will restrict tobacco and e-cigarette products. The restriction will be for all city owned and operated properties, including parks, lakes and little league sports fields. 

City Council voted unanimously (5-0) to approve the ordinance (No. 3252).

The Guthrie Park Board first heard the proposal and submitted it to the city council for their final vote.

The Park Board says they saw the action as a benefit for the youth of Guthrie
as a deterrent from smoking and a way of keeping harmful cigarette waste away from children, pets and the environment.

With the ordinance in place, the City of Guthrie has a higher eligibility for grants.

State Bill 501 took effect in Nov. 2013 allows cities, towns and counties to enact laws that restrict smoking in municipality or county owned or operated property. More than 30 cities in Oklahoma have already passed a similar ordinance.

The use of tobacco products and vaping devices are banned from city owned and/or operated properties. This includes, city buildings, police department, city owned vehicles, cemetery, ball fields, airport hangar, Liberty and Guthrie Lake, outdoor recreational areas and swimming pool.

Exempted are streets and sidewalks, on a personal water craft or personal automobile.

Violators could face up to a $200 fine and court costs.

Portion of the Ordinance No. 3252:

Section 11-102. Prohibition of Tobacco Products and Electronic Smoking Devices in Certain Places Prohibited.

(a) The possession of lighted tobacco in any form is a public nuisance and dangerous to public health and is hereby prohibited when such possession is in any indoor place used by or open to the public, public transportation, or any indoor workplace, except where specifically allowed by law.

(b) All buildings and other properties, including indoor and outdoor areas, owned or operated by the City of Guthrie, shall be entirely tobacco free to include all forms of tobacco products and electronic smoking devices.

(c) All indoor and outdoor recreational areas owned or operated by the City of Guthrie, shall be entirely tobacco free to include all forms of tobacco products and electronic smoking devices.

Section 11-103. Exemptions. The restrictions provided in Section 7-32 shall not apply to the following:

(a) stand-alone bars, stand-alone taverns and cigar bars;

(b) the room or rooms where licensed charitable bingo games are being operated, but only during the hours of operation of such games;

(c) up to 25 percent of the guest rooms at a hotel or other lodging establishment;

(d) retail tobacco stores predominantly engaged in the sale of tobacco products and accessories and in which the sale of other products is merely incidental and in which no food or beverage is sold or served for consumption on the premises;

(e) workplaces where only the owner or operator of the workplace, or the immediate family of the owner or operator, performs any work in the workplace, and the workplace has only incidental public access. “Incidental public access” means that a place of business has only an occasional person, who is not an employee, present at the business to transact business or make a delivery. It does not include businesses that depend on walk-in customers for any part of their business;

(f) workplaces occupied exclusively by one or more smokers, if the workplace has only incidental public access;

(g) private offices occupied exclusively by one or more smokers;

(h) private residences and workplaces within private residences, except that smoking shall not be allowed inside any private residence that is used as a licensed child care facility during hours of operation;

(i) medical research or treatment centers, if smoking is integral to the research or

(j) a facility operated by a post or organization of past or present members of the Armed Forces of the United States which is exempt from taxation pursuant to Sections 501 (c)(8), 501 (c)(10) or 501 (c)(19) of the Internal Revenue Code, 26 U.S.C., Sections 501 (c)(8), 501 (c)(10) or 501 (c)(19), when such facility is utilized exclusively by its members and their families and for the conduct of post or organization nonprofit operations except during an event or activity which is open to the public; and

(k) any outdoor seating area of a restaurant; provided, smoking shall not be allowed within 15 feet of any exterior public doorway or any air intake of a restaurant.

(l) public sidewalks and streets, but smoking is not allowed within 15 feet of exterior door or intake of a public place.

(m) on board a personal water craft of personal truck or automobile

(n) airport hangar lease private space under existing lease, but not leases entered into after effective date of this ordinance.

  1. June 4, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    Restricting our rights in public places is not the way to go. I really don’t care if it makes Guthrie “more eligible for grants.” It sounds a lot like Common Core and those grant monies (Race to the Top) of which Oklahoma didn’t get a single cent. An ordinance to have MORE government control in public places is not very American, if you ask me. It’s not worth the little grant money that Guthrie MIGHT be getting. Chewing tobacco and smoking might be gross to some people and it is medically unhealthy, but it does not cause death and destruction like alcohol (allowed at the lake).

  2. June 5, 2014 at 8:11 am

    That $450,000 grant Guthrie is currently seeking doesn’t seem like a “little grant money” as you put it… also many people really don’t prefer to have any type of smoke or steam blown in their faces. I think this sets a good standard for our community.

  3. June 5, 2014 at 8:29 am

    I applaud the city for trying to take a stance for the health of its citizens and being consciences about our public image. But as a smoker myself, I don’t whole-heartedly approve. I’ll grant you, many smokers don’t care about their waste being littered all over the ground, but to completely limit us to smoking out in a boat on the water, in our cars, house, or standing on the sidewalk is a bit ridiculous. Also, what’s this about banning e-cigs? It doesn’t have waste, smell, environmental impacts, nothing. It’s simple water vapor mixed with nicotine so the “smoker” can get their fix without disturbing anyone else.

    I see that the City Council voted unanimously 5-0 on this matter. I wonder, out of the whole 5 people voting, how many are smokers?

  4. June 5, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    Lori- The ordinance is ONLY for City property not person property. So if you are on YOUR boat on the water you are fine. If you are at the lake in YOUR vehicle you are fine. Sidewalks and Streets are exempt

  5. June 7, 2014 at 5:54 am

    I am a non-smoker, but have a family of smokers. Once they switched to the vapors I was very happy. Now everywhere we turn the vapors are also being banned. When someone is trying to change an addiction to a vapor, which leave no waste, has no smell, no environmental impact, etc. it makes no sense why the government has to step in to every aspect of our lives. Vapors and e-cigarettes are ways to help people who are trying to get away from tobacco use and should not be in the same category as tobacco.

  6. June 9, 2014 at 9:57 am

    Vapors or vaping devices have not been regulated, there is no research on them whatsoever. If you remember a long time ago the tobacco industry came out with chewing tobacco or snuff and there claim was that it does not leave second hand smoke, no impact, etc. after 7 years of the industry saying that and after years trying to formulate research it came out that chewing tobacco and suff is WORSE then cigarettes. All those vapors are doing is trading one addiction to another. Bet you didnt know that Logan County schools also banned them, youth are finding ways put drugs and alcohol in them, Posion control centers have seen an infulx of poisonings from kids getting a hold of them. I think what Guthrie is trying to do is set a good example for our youth. You can chose to do it, but not around where our kids play

  7. berta2014
    August 19, 2014 at 11:05 am

    I think regular cigarettes and e-cigarettes/vaping devices should be treated the same as far as the use in certain public places, as well as the sale to minors… that I could understand, but lets not discount the fact that vaping has helped me kick a 30 year nasty cigarette smoking habit to the curb.

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