No smoking in public at Gwinnett Co., with some exceptions

The ordinance passed by the county commissioners will ban smoking in most public places.

GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. — Commissioners in Gwinnet County met on Tuesday and passed a smoke-free air ordinance that will ban smoking in public spaces, with some exceptions.

The ordinance replaces the Indoor Air Quality Ordinance passed in 2005, with the commissioners saying “the tobacco industry has changed significantly” and new information has been released about the health and safety of the product.

Gwinnett’s comprehensive smoking cessation order goes into effect June 23.

Anyone found guilty of smoking in a prohibited area can be fined up to $50. Businesses that fail to comply with this order can be fined up to $100 for their first violation, $200 for a second, and up to $500 for each additional violation within a year, the order says. .

The county said in its ordinance that it was to “ensure the right of non-smokers to breathe smoke-free air” and “that the need to breathe smoke-free air must take priority over the desire to smoke”.

According to the ordinance, smoking is prohibited in all “enclosed public places within” the county, including, but not limited to:

  • Aquariums, galleries, libraries and museums
  • Areas accessible to the general public in businesses and nonprofit entities frequented by the public, including but not limited to banks, laundromats, professional offices, and retail service establishments
  • Bars
  • Bingo facilities
  • Childcare centers and adult daycare centers
  • Congress facilities
  • Educational institutions, public and private
  • Elevators
  • Gaming facilities
  • Health facilities
  • Hotels and motels
  • parking structures
  • Polling stations
  • Public transport vehicles, including public transport and buses, are under the authority of Gwinnett County, and public transport facilities, including buses, trains and airport facilities
  • Restaurants
  • Restrooms, lobbies, reception areas, corridors and other areas of common use.
  • Retail stores
  • Halls, chambers, places of meeting or public assembly are under the control of the county
  • Service lines
  • Shopping centers

Video below | Gwinnett County Public Hearing May 25, 2022


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The county states in its order that the exceptions include “private residences, except when used as a licensed child care center, adult day care center or health care facility”, hookah/steam bars or lounges, as well than cigar bars and lounges.

Gwinnett County said it worked with the American Heart Association to develop this prescription.

“The American Heart Association celebrates the leadership of the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners in its recent decision to create healthier environments in all public places,” said Laura Bracci, director of government relations at the American Heart Association. “Gwinnett County has taken an important step towards becoming a healthier place where people can work, dine and live.”

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