Where can you smoke outdoors in Oregon state parks?
The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Commission recently adopted new rules that spell out where you can smoke outdoors in Oregon’s state parks.
Richard Walkoski, communications and research specialist, says that under the new rules smoking is allowed in:
- personal vehicles, tents and recreational vehicles in accordance with other laws governing smoking in vehicles;
- designated campsites in developed overnight camping areas, unless temporarily suspended due to high fire hazard;
- day-use state parks operating as official Safety Rest Areas; and
- where permitted by the park manager for personal use by a member of a federally recognized Oregon tribe as part of their traditional religious, medicinal, or other customary cultural heritage practices.
Prior to the Commission action, public meetings were held in Grants Pass, Champoeg State Heritage Area, Bend and Newport in December 2013, followed by a 30-day public comment period that ended Jan. 17, 2014. People sent 116 e-mail comments and 10 letters, and nine people commented at the public hearings. The comments were divided with 80 in support and 55 opposed. Some people, including an advisory committee helping us with the rule, asked us to examine smoking on the ocean shore, so we’ll review that next.
The rule may be on the books, but we’ll spend 2014 just letting park visitors know about the new rule. Enforcement would start in 2015, and even then, we always start out with a polite request.
Read the commission agenda item for background information.