The Benton County, Ore. Board of Commissioners will take public comment at their meeting today as they prepare to consider revisions to the county code that would prohibit smoking in retail tobacco stores, as well as to expand the smoking ban around public buildings to include accessibility ramps and lines of people standing outside the building. The proposal would also ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors and prohibit their use wherever smoking is currently prohibited.

The changes would only apply to unincorporated parts of the county, but are designed to mirror changes made by the county’s largest city, Corvallis, though the city hasn’t banned smoking in tobacco stores yet.

The county currently has four exemptions that permit smoking in certain areas: private residences when not used as a child care, adult care or health care facility; bars; the bar portion of a restaurant, provided that it is a separate area with a ventilation system that prevents smoke from entering the restaurant; and retail tobacco stores.

Benton County is located in the Willamette Valley on the western side of the state, approximately 90 miles south of Portland. It is home to approximately 86,000 residents, as well as Oregon State University.


Patrick Lagreid

I strive to capture the essence of a cigar and the people behind them in my work – every cigar you light up is the culmination of the work of countless people and often represents generations of struggle and stories. For me, it’s about so much more than the cigar – it’s about the story behind it, the experience of enjoying the work of artisans and the way that a good cigar can bring people together. In addition to my work with halfwheel, I’m the public address announcer for the Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks during spring training, as well as for the Salt River Rafters of the Arizona Fall League, the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League. I also work in a number of roles for, plus I'm a voice over artist. I previously covered the Phoenix and national cigar scene for, and was an editor for Cigar Snob magazine.