Assemblyman Moriarty’s Bill Banning Smoking in Public Parks & Beaches Becomes Law

New Jersey beaches and parks will soon be smoke-free thanks to Assemblyman Moriarty’s bill, A-3798. Earlier this summer Governor Murphy signed the legislation to expand The New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act of 2006 to prohibit smoking on beaches and in parks.

The public has known about the harmful effects of smoking for decades. The dangers of second & third-hand smoke are well documented and are a major concern to Assemblyman Moriarty. We have come to expect clean air at home, at work and at restaurants. However, until now smoking has remained commonplace in our parks and on our beaches.

In this spirit, the Assemblyman sponsored this legislation so families can enjoy a walk in the park or a trip to the beach without worrying about the dangers of tobacco smoke. Under this law, individuals who choose to smoke after being warned against it will receive a fine. Fines will range from at least $250 for a first offense to $500 for a second offense and $1,000 for all subsequent offenses.

Some public smoking areas will remain open. The law will allow counties and municipalities to create limited smoking areas on beaches. Individuals will also be able to smoke in parking lots adjacent to parks and beaches.

This law will take effect no later than January 2019. In other words, by next summer beach trips and visits to local and State parks will be smoke-free.

Since joining the General Assembly, Assemblyman Moriarty has pursued the expansion of the New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act. In 2009, the Assemblyman pushed to expand the Act to include restrictions on the use of electronic smoking devices. This new law is the latest example of the Assemblyman’s progress in the fight for the clean air New Jerseyans deserve.