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Glitch in law may delay beach smoking ban enforcement

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 1:34 a.m. HST, Apr 9, 2013

Smoking is no longer legal at Kapiolani Park, Kuhio Beach Park, the beach side of Ala Moana Regional Park, Sandy Beach Park and three other city recreational facilities in East Honolulu under a bill signed by Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell Monday.

The ban takes effect immediately but it is not yet enforceable in most of the parks due to a technical glitch, city attorneys from the Office of Corporation Counsel said.

Six of the seven properties are owned by the state and, as a result, require separate language changes to the Revised Ordinances of Honolulu for enforcement to be allowed, Parks Director Toni Robinson said in a letter to City Council Chairman Ernie Martin last Tuesday.

An additional bill will now likely be needed.

Violators are subject to fines of up to $100 for a first offense, $200 for a second violation within 12 months and $500 for subsequent offenses.

Other beaches where the ban will apply: Duke Kahanamoku Beach Park, Kapiolani Beach Park and Kapiolani Park Beach Center.

Before Monday, smoking was allowed at all outdoor city parks and beaches except Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve.

The bill was sponsored by Councilman Stanley Chang, who argued that it was both a litter and health issue.

Councilman Ikaika Anderson unsuccessfully tried to have the ban apply to all city parks and beaches.

But Chang and others said they wanted to see how an expanded ban worked first.

Caldwell indicated to media in recent weeks that he would be open to supporting a ban on all city beaches and parks.

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