The Pitt County Board of Commissioners rejected a proposed smoking ban for parks and recreation areas on Monday, with a vote of 5-4 allowing smokers to continue to light up.

The ban has been in the works since June 2014, when the county board of health drafted a preliminary ordinance for review. The Greenville Parks and Recreation Department, which oversees parks in the county’s largest city, voted to support the proposal in May 2014.

Commissioner Tom Coulson, who is a former smoker according to a report on, said that while would prefer tobacco product users would give them up, he didn’t feel that the government should restrict their usage of a legal product.

Pitt County is home to just under 175,000 residents and is made up of the Greenville metropolitan area.

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.