New Jersey may ban smoking, vaping at all beaches

Beachgoers in New Jersey who want to inhale only fresh, clean air may get their wish.

A state Senate panel unanimously (5–0) passed a bill that prohibits smoking and vaping at all beaches along the Jersey shore.

The Senate Environment and Energy Committee approved the ban, citing the health risks of second-hand smoke and the 29,000 cigarette butts found in the sand and water last season.

Many shore communities, including Asbury Park, Belmar, and others, already have smoking bans in place, following the lead of the prohibition at state beaches and state parks.

The proposed fees for violators are $250 for the first offense, $500 for the second, and $1,000 for subsequent citations.

The legislation now moves to the full Senate.