Alabama bans smoking on public beach
GULF SHORES, ALA. The sugar-white sand in Gulf Shores is Alabama’s most popular half-mile stretch of public beachfront. This area also is undergoing $15 million in renovations and city officials want to keep it looking nice. So, in June, city officials adopted a wide-ranging list of regulations that included an Alabama first: The public beachfront became smoke-free.
The ban is part of a national trend as politicians try to keep popular attractions from looking like ashtrays and turning away tourists, Al.com reported .
In New Jersey, a new law goes into effect on Jan. 16 banning any kind of tobacco use on beaches or boardwalks, with offenders fined up to $1,000. In Florida, lawmakers are considering legislation that would implement a wide-ranging ban on smoking at any public beach, empowering law enforcers to cite offenders.
“What Florida is doing is not surprising,” said Grant Brown, recreation and cultural affairs director with the city of Gulf Shores, comparing smoking bans on beaches with restrictions to smoking at outdoor athletic stadiums.