McK smoking ban enforcement ban questioned; McKMac will consider next week

Jack Durham
Mad River Union

McKINLEYVILLE – The McKinleyville Community Services District has the authority to ban smoking in the town’s parks and outside district buildings, but it is uncertain who would actually enforce such a rule.

The issue was briefly discussed at the Jan. 4 meeting of the district’s Board of Directors after resident Chad Sefcik asked about the district’s ability to ban smoking at its parks.

District Manager Greg Orsini explained that the district can ban smoking on its properties, but not on streets or other facilities not under its jurisdiction. To ban smoking at district parks, the district would need to create an ordinance, which would ultimately have to be approved by the Board of Directors.

The big question, though, is who would enforce such a ban?

Orsini said it wasn’t clear whether district staff or Sheriff’s deputies would be responsible for enforcement.

Since the issue was brought up under the public comment portion of the meeting and was not on the agenda, the board limited its discussion on the matter.

Board President Dennis Mayo said that if people are interested in the district pursuing a smoking ordinance, the issue would need to be placed on a future agenda and there would need to be a “far-reaching discussion.”

Such an ordinance may be unnecessary if the County of Humboldt pursues its own smoking ordinance, which would cover unincorporated areas of the county including McKinleyville.

The McKinleyville Municipal Advisory Committee, which advises the county Board of Supervisors, is scheduled to discuss the county’s proposed smoking ordinance at its meeting Wednesday, Jan. 25 at 6 p.m.

These meetings are typically held at the Azalea Conference Center, located behind McKinleyville Middle School at Central Avenue and Railroad Drive. However, if a larger audience is expected, the meeting may be held at the other “azalea” venue, Azalea Hall, at Pierson Park. Those who want to attend should check the agenda at before going.

A smoking ordinance would include all smokable items, including tobacco, marijuana and ecigarettes.



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