A bill seeking to ban smoking on the beaches of Florida has been introduced into the state Senate by Sen. Joe Gruters, R-Saratota.
The bill, S.B. 218, was filed on Wednesday as the state’s legislature gets ready to convene for its 2019 session, and seeks to fine violators either $25 or with 10 hours of community service. Law enforcement officers would be tasked with issuing citations should someone break the proposed law.
The law is being introduced as per Florida state law, only the state can ban smoking at beaches. In 2017, a Sarasota County smoking ban for beaches was deemed to be unconstitutional due to the 2003 state laws regarding smoking in restaurants, workplaces and other indoor areas. In that law, it was written that only the state can make laws regarding smoking.
Should the bill be approved, it would go into effect on July 1. It has not yet been assigned to a committee for an initial hearing.