The small city of Charlevoix, Mich. is hoping that signage and a promotional campaign will keep tobacco out of municipal parks and beaches, taking an alternative approach than a traditional ordinance. As such, there are no fines, warning or tickets that will be issued to those who choose to smoke in those areas. The city council discussed the proposal and made the recommendation to endorse the signage and public awareness option at its July 7 meeting. The agenda from that meeting can be found here, beginning on page 103.
With a lack of police officers and city staff to enforce such a change, the city is hoping to achieve the same result with this community promotion. The goal is to keep tobacco products away from minors and reduce the perception that consuming tobacco products in public is acceptable.
9and10News.com is reporting that new signs will be installed at city parks and beaches beginning this week. City manager Rob Straebel said that the new policy will be reevaluated in approximately one year to see if it has had the desired effects.
Charlevoix is located in the lower peninsula’s northwestern coast, with a population of approximately 2,500 residents.