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Lawmakers to consider smoking ban at state parks and beaches

March 18, 2010 |  7:45 am

Andrew Molera State Park

California lawmakers will consider Thursday a proposal to ban smoking at state parks and beaches, a move supporters say would reduce litter, limit exposure to secondhand smoke and prevent wildfires.

Violators would be subject to a fine of $100.

State Sen. Jenny Oropeza (D-Long Beach), who introduced the bill, said cigarette butts are the most frequently found marine debris and that cigarette waste threatens the marine life that ingests it.

Various local governments, including Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach, Los Angeles and Malibu, have passed bans on smoking at local parks, beaches and piers.

Tobacco manufacturers oppose the bill, saying a ban on smoking at beaches and parks infringes on the rights of smokers. The bill does not cover parking lots next to state parks and beaches.

-- My-Thuan Tran

Photo: Hikers and horse riders at Andrew Molera State Park in California’s Big Sur area. Credit: Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times.

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