Starting today, February 1, smoking or vaping tobacco and nicotine products is not allowed in many public places in the Town of Banff.
According to the town's website, smoking or vaping tobacco will no longer be allowed at:
- Bus stops
- Public sidewalks and pedestrian zones
- Municipal parks/parkettes/green spaces
- Trails and Pathways
- Outdoor markets
- Outdoor events
- in proximity to children not in one’s custody, care or control
Mayor Corrie DiManno said that this bylaw is ultimately about protecting the health of our residents and visitors.
"We want to promote healthy lifestyles in our community, and everyone has the right – especially children – to be free from the harmful effects of smoking and vaping tobacco.”
In order to enforce the bylaw, both municipal enforcement officers who are patrolling will be able to issue tickets for non-compliance, though the town underlined that because the town sees many tourists, the first approach will be to educate the public. RCMP will also be able to enforce the bylaw. Fines can start at $250 for smoking in public.
However, the town did add that businesses are allowed to continue to designate smoking areas on their private property, such as hotel grounds and sidewalks leading to restaurants, off the public sidewalks.
"Businesses are not allowed to designate smoking areas in adjacent public areas such as parks or sidewalks. In public areas where smoking is permitted, it must not occur within five metres of sidewalks or trails, as per the municipal bylaw. "
Smoking and vaping tobacco and nicotine products will still be allowed:
- on private property where it is permitted
- outdoor parking areas, and
- in Banff’s network of alleys.
Previously, the town banned smoking or vaping cannabis in any public places in the town boundaries, except in the Parks Canada-managed Cascades Gardens, and on trails and areas outside the town boundaries. Okotoks and Strathmore have similar bans.