AP NEWS

California Senate votes to ban smoking at state parks

May 23, 2019

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California lawmakers are trying again to ban smoking at state parks and coastal beaches.

The state Senate voted 28-10 on Thursday to ban cigarettes, cigars, pipes and electronic smoking devices from state parks and coastal beaches. Violators would be fined $25. But additional penalties and assessments would bring the total fine to about $200.

Lawmakers have tried to ban smoking at state parks and coastal beaches nearly a dozen times over the past 15 years. All have failed to become law. Former governors Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jerry Brown vetoed several attempts.

Park rangers would enforce the ban, but the law would let them exempt people smoking as part of their religious beliefs. The bill does not specify what religious practices, leaving that to the discretion of the park rangers.

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