Skagit County mulls ban on smoking, vaping in public areas
Skagit County is weighing a ban on smoking and vaping in public areas.
“The Skagit County Public Health department makes it a priority to protect and improve the health of all county residents, including access to clean air,” it said in a Tuesday news release. “The intent of this ordinance is to reduce access and exposure to smoking and vaping for children and youth, as well as promote a healthier environment for all residents.”
If Skagit’s smoking ban passes, it would join roughly half the cities in King County, including Seattle. Those bans are generally enforced with fines and expulsions from parks. A ban on smoking and vaping in workplaces, bars, restaurants, and theaters is already in place in all of King County.
“Smoking and vape-free policies are one of the most effective tools for protecting the health of a community,” said Jennifer Johnson, Skagit County Public Health Director. “Not only do they protect non-smokers and non-vapers from secondhand exposure, such policies can also be effective in reducing access and use by youth.”
Skagit County’s ban would encompass indoor public places, workplaces, and outdoor public places where children congregate. As of now, Skagit County Public Health has yet to formally adopt the Washington State Smoking in Public Places Law that took effect back in 2005.
The County Health Board will receive comments on the measure at a public hearing at 2 p.m. on April 9, at the County Administration Building in Mount Vernon.