Smoking on Niagara's beaches could be banned by August

Smoking could be banned on Niagara's beaches by August.

Diana Teng with Niagara Public Health says after months of collecting public input, they are ready to share a report and recommendation to council to update the region's by-laws.

Currently there are no laws banning smoking on beaches.

Teng says more than half of residents want smoking including cigarettes, vaping and cannabis use to be banned on the beaches and that's what they are recommending.

She says only beaches run by municipalities or the region would be included in the ban, private beaches would be exempt.

The by-law needs triple majority support.

It goes to Regional Council next Thursday and then will filter down to the region's 12 municipalities for approval.

Teng says they are hoping the new by-laws will come into effect July 31st.

They are also recommending that smoking be banned nine metres surrounding any entrance to a public building including malls, places of employment and apartment and condos.

79 percent of respondents were in favour of that move.