Centre County, Pennsylvania has jumped on the wave of banning smoking, as county commissioners voted 2-1 to enact the ban, which will begin on April 1, 2014.
The ban affects the courthouse, Willowbank Building, district courts and other county offices, including what the CentreDaily.com described as the popular courthouse steps and benches, which is frequented by those visiting and working at the courts.
County Commissioner Chris Exarchos told Centre Daily that the move was done to help county employees quit smoking, adding that other major employers are enacting similar bans and that the county is making resources available for employees who wish to quit using tobacco. According to the report, employees caught using tobacco on county property after the ban goes into effect will be given warnings and required to go through a tobacco cessation program, which the possibility of losing their job for repeated violations.
Centre County encompasses approximately 170,000 people in central Pennsylvania, and includes the city of State College, home to Penn State University. Beginning in January, the school will begin imposing a $75 per month surcharge on employees who use tobacco, with usage disclosure required during benefits enrollment.