Bye bye butts

It's Official: No More Smoking at City-Owned Public Beaches and Parks

City of Sarasota commissioners voted unanimously to ban cigarette smoking in non-designated areas. The new ordinance is now in effect.

By Kim Doleatto October 6, 2022

littered cigarette butts in the sand on the beach

A igarette smoking ban has gone into effect at city-owned parks and beaches.

A new ordinance that bans smoking on city-owned public beaches and within city-owned public parks, except within designated smoking areas, is now in effect. The area's only city-owned beaches are on Lido Key; the ban will not affect Siesta Key beaches. Smokers will still be able to light up in park or beach parking lots, where available. If no parking areas exist near a city-owned park or beach, smokers will be allowed to smoke so on public right-of-ways or sidewalks where they can appropriately dispose of cigarette butts. 

The Oct. 3 regular commissioner's meeting marked the second and final reading of the new ordinance, which gained unanimous support from city commissioners on both occasions.

Per the city's violation code, failure to follow the new rule is punishable by a fine not exceeding $500 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 60 days. In addition, the court will order a contribution of $100 to go toward the crime prevention fund of the city.

Read about the first round of voting here, which cites health and environmental factors behind the move to ban butts. For a full list of city of Sarasota-owned parks and beaches, click here.

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