Florida smoking laws originated with Florida’s Clean Indoor Air Act, which was implemented in 1985 originally. It was the general consensus of legislators that there needed to be rules and regulations established to help protect the public from secondhand smoke. In 2002, a vote was taken to see how Florida citizens would respond to a proposed amendment to Florida’s state Constitution prohibiting smoking in all indoor, enclosed work spaces. The response was great, with 71 percent of Florida voters voting in favor of the amendment. The Smoke Free Law was implemented in 2003.
What Do Florida Smoking Laws Cover?
The Smoke Free Law prohibited smoking in all enclosed workspaces. Rather than limiting smoking to certain areas within this definition, Florida adopted one law to cover all workspaces in the state. The exceptions to the Clean Indoor Air Act include private residences so long as childcare or healthcare are not being conducted on the premises, retail tobacco stores, motels and hotels with established designated smoking rooms, stand alone bars, medical and scientific research facilities, smoking cessation programs, and designated rooms inside customs at airports specifically designated for smoking. According to Florida smoking laws, the designated customs rooms must abide by certain rules and regulations such as signage, etc. to promote healthy, conscious behaviors.
The Clean Indoor Air Act requires businesses and employers to post proper signage at the workspace. Employers, as well as airport agents, must post clear signage that shows where smoking is and is not allowed. It is left up to the discretion of the agent, employer or business owner to determine the best course of action for the signs. Unlike other states that require specific dimensions, colors, etc. Florida smoking laws allow those responsible for maintaining the signage to choose how to display them so long as the signs are clear, easy to read, and posted in the correct manner.
Florida’s Clean Indoor Air Act has regulations for public transportation and school property as well. Because smoking is prohibited in public transportation areas, the Clean Indoor Air Act requires that public messages be made in certain intervals to reinforce the public’s awareness of the prohibition on smoking in such areas.
How Are Schools Affected By Florida Smoking Laws
For schools, persons under the age of 18 are prohibited from smoking within 1,000 feet of a school between certain hours. If law enforcement sees this action, a citation may be given, and a fine of up to $25 may be required, as well as 50 hours of community service or an anti-tobacco program as endorsed by the local school system.
Various Florida government departments, as well as the State Fire Marshal are responsible for implementing the state rules and regulations, as well as ensuring that they are properly enforced. Those who have received a 30 notice of violation for violating the rules and regulations or failing to enforce or report violations to the appropriate agency can be fined a minimum of $250-750 for the first violation, and $500-2000 for each violation thereafter.
Persons violating Florida’s Clean Indoor Air Act will be considered to have committed a non-criminal violation. Such persons may be fined no more than $100 for the first violation, and no more than $50 for each violation thereafter. These fines will be subject to the jurisdiction of the appropriate county in which the violation occurred. It is in a person’s best interest to abide by Florida smoking laws.