Blowing smoke at parks and playgrounds in Palm Beach County could soon become a thing of the past.
Eric Call, the county’s director of parks and recreation, says the county commission plans to vote this October on a proposed vaping ban. He explains that the commission is reacting to the increasing popularity of e-cigarettes among young people.
Call says, “I heard a statistic recently that 70% of high schoolers are actively engaged in some form of vaping, and that’s pretty amazing to me.”
According to the U.S. surgeon general, e-cigarettes have become the most commonly used tobacco product among youth during the past five years, with more than 3.6 million vaping last year.
Call believes it could be difficult, if not impossible, for law enforcement to monitor such large areas, which means the public could be asked to operate on an honor system. Offenders would face fines that would increase with each incident. He says, “Fifty dollars for the first occurrence, $100 for the second, $200 for the third and $300 for the fourth and any successive violations of that.”
County commissioners will vote on the issue during their scheduled meeting on October 8.