If the thought of sitting on a white sand beach on Oahu, holding a fresh mojito in one hand while puffing on a Marlboro Light with the other appeals to you, then you better get your fill by January 1.
That’s the date the Huffington Post is reporting smoking at beaches, parks and bus stops on Oahu will be officially be prohibited, making Oahu the latest tourism spot to ban smoking and one of just a few to enforce such bans in outdoor areas.
According to the story, Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell signed two bills Sunday at Waikiki Beach that ban smoking starting January 1 at bus stops and parks, including beaches, playgrounds, swimming pools and athletic fields. Before the bans take effect on Jan. 1, city officials will be posting signs and informing residents and tourists.
The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports the bills were initially scheduled to take effect when the mayor signed them but more time was needed for public education. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources enforces rules from the high water mark to the water's edge. But the department has given the city permission to enforce the rules in the water at Kuhio Beach Park.
Meanwhile in the Caribbean, Jamaica is set to become the latest Caribbean destination to ban smoking in public. Health Minister Fenton Ferguson has said that smoking will be prohibited in public places. That ban was slated to officially be put into effect beginning July 15. Other Caribbean spots that already have public smoking bans include the Cayman Islands, The Dominican Republic, Suriname and Grenada.
New York City banned smoking in parks and on beaches in May 2011 but enforcement of the penalty is meant to be carried out by “public pressure,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg has said, and not by police officers.
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