health Protection Regulations


6.18.010    Title

6.18.020    Findings and purposes

6.18.030    Definitions

6.18.040    Application of chapter to City-owned facilities

6.18.050    Prohibition of smoking in public places

6.18.060    Regulation of smoking in places of employment

6.18.070    Where smoking not regulated

6.18.080    Posting of signs

6.18.090    Enforcement

6.18.100    Violations and penalties

6.18.110    Nonretaliation

6.18.120    Public education

6.18.130    Other applicable laws

6.18.140    Severability

Statutory reference:

Local regulations on smoking in enclosed places of employment have been suspended by Cal. Labor Code § 6404.5; however, pursuant to Cal. Labor Code § 6404.5(i), if the statute is repealed or amended so that the smoking prohibition is no longer applicable to all enclosed places of employment in the state, then this chapter shall be fully enforceable.

6.18.010 TITLE.

This chapter shall be known as the “Smoking Pollution Control and Health Protection Regulations.”

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


A.    Numerous studies have found that tobacco smoke is a major contributor to indoor air pollution, and that breathing environmental tobacco smoke is a cause of disease, including lung cancer, in nonsmokers. At special risk are children, elderly people, individuals with cardiovascular disease, and individuals with impaired respiratory function, including asthmatics and those with obstructive airway disease.

B.    Health hazards induced by breathing environmental tobacco smoke include lung cancer, heart disease, respiratory infection, decreased respiratory function, bronchoconstriction, and bronchospasm.

C.    The American Medical Association, former U.S. Surgeon Generals C. Everett Koop, MD and Antonia Novello, MD and former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Dr. Louis Sullivan have publicly denounced the tobacco industry for targeting children, teens, women and members of racial and ethnic minority groups in its advertising and promotions and have called for local, state and federal action to prevent the tobacco industry from targeting these individuals, especially youth.

D.    Based on the weight of available scientific evidence, the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has concluded that the widespread exposure to environmental tobacco smoke in the United States presents a serious and substantial public health impact.

E.    Cigarette butts disposed of on landscape areas generate the most frequently occurring type of litter which are washed into storm drains and conveyed into rivers, streams, and the ocean where they slowly decompose into particles of foam eaten by fish and other life forms and where they leach toxic chemicals into native waters of the state.

F.    The purpose of this chapter is:

1.    To protect the public health and welfare by prohibiting smoking in public places and places of employment;

2.    To guarantee the right of nonsmokers to breathe smoke-free air, and to recognize that the need to breathe smoke-free air shall have priority over the desire to smoke; and

3.    To reduce addiction to tobacco products by children and teenagers.

G.    It is the further purpose of the City Council in enacting this Ordinance to provide for the public health, safety and welfare by:

1.    Discouraging the use of tobacco or other weeds or plants that produce noxious smoke around persons who do not use such products;

2.    Protecting members of the public from exposure to tobacco smoke or other weeds or plants that produce noxious smoke; and

3.    Reducing litter caused by cigarette butts, cigar butts, and any other tobacco-related waste, which requires expenditure of the limited City resources to clean up the litter.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994; Am. Ord. 881, § 2, passed 1-26-2009; Am. Ord. 895, § 1, passed 07-11-2011)


For the purpose of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

BAR. An area which is devoted to the serving of alcoholic beverages for consumption by guests on the premises and in which the serving of food is only incidental to the consumption of the beverages. Although a restaurant may contain a bar, the term BAR shall not include the restaurant dining area. A BAR for the purpose of this definition does not include any establishment where tobacco smoke can filter into a restaurant through a passageway, ventilation system, or means other than a doorway which shall remain closed except for customer ingress and egress.

BUSINESS. Any sole proprietorship, partnership, joint venture, corporation or other business entity formed for profit-making purposes, including retail establishments where goods or services are sold as well as professional corporations and other entities where legal, medical, dental, engineering, architectural or other professional services are delivered.

ELECTRONIC SMOKING DEVICE. An electronic and/or battery-operated device, the use of which may resemble traditional smoking and that can be used to deliver an inhaled dose of nicotine or other substances including any component, part, or accessory of such a device, whether or not sold separately. The term includes any such device, whether manufactured, distributed, marketed, or sold as an electronic cigarette, an e-cigarette, an electronic cigar, an electronic cigarillo, an electronic pipe, an electronic hookah, an electronic vape or vaping pen, or any other product name or descriptor that is used for the purpose of circumventing the prohibition of smoking. The term does not include any inhaler prescribed by a licensed doctor.

EMPLOYEE. Any person who is employed by any employer in the consideration for direct or indirect monetary wages or profit, and any person who volunteers his or her services for a nonprofit entity.

EMPLOYER. Any person, partnership, corporation, including a municipal corporation, or nonprofit entity, who employs the services of one (1) or more individual persons.

ENCLOSED AREA. All space between a floor and ceiling which is enclosed on all sides by solid walls or windows (exclusive of door or passage ways) which extend from the floor to the ceiling, including all space therein screened by partitions which do not extend to the ceiling or are not solid, “office landscaping” or similar structures.

PLACE OF EMPLOYMENT. Any enclosed area under the control of a public or private employer which employees normally frequent during the course of employment, including, but not limited to, work areas, employee lounges and restrooms, conference and class rooms, employee cafeteria and hallways. A private residence is not a PLACE OF EMPLOYMENT unless it is used as a child care or health care facility.

PUBLIC PLACE. Any enclosed area to which the public is invited or in which the public is permitted, including, but not limited to, banks, educational facilities, health facilities, laundromats, public transportation facilities, reception areas, restaurants, retail food production and marketing establishments, retail service establishments, retail stores, theaters and waiting rooms. A private residence is not a PUBLIC PLACE.

RESTAURANT. Any coffee shop, cafeteria, sandwich stand, private and public school cafeteria, and any other eating establishment which gives or offers for sale food to the public, guests or employees, as well as kitchens in which food is prepared on the premises for serving elsewhere, including catering facilities, except that the term RESTAURANT shall not include a cocktail lounge or tavern if the cocktail lounge or tavern is a “bar” as defined above.

RETAIL TOBACCO STORE. A retail store utilized primarily for the sale of tobacco products and accessories and in which the sale of other products is merely incidental.

SELF-SERVICE MERCHANDISING. Open promotional displays of tobacco products and point-of-purchase tobacco promotional products that the public has access to without the intervention of an employee.

SERVICE LINE. Any indoor line at which one (1) or more persons are waiting for or receiving service of any kind, whether or not the service involves the exchange of money.

SMOKING. Inhaling, exhaling, burning, or the carrying, holding or operating, of any lighted or heated tobacco product intended for inhalation, whether natural or synthetic, in any manner or form. SMOKING also means the use of an electronic smoking device that creates an aerosol or vapor, in any manner or any form, or the use of any oral smoking device for the purpose of circumventing the prohibition of smoking.

SPORTS ARENA. Sports pavilions, gymnasiums, health spas, boxing arenas, swimming pools, roller and ice rinks, bowling alleys and other similar places where members of the general public assemble either to engage in physical exercise, participate in athletic competition, or witness sports events.

TOBACCO PRODUCT. Any tobacco cigarette, cigar, pipe tobacco, smokeless tobacco, snuff, or any other form of tobacco which may be utilized for smoking, chewing, inhalation, or other manner of ingestion.

TOBACCO VENDING MACHINE. Any electronic or mechanical device or appliance the operation of which depends upon the insertion of money, whether in coin or paper currency, or other things representative of value, which dispenses or releases a tobacco product.

VENDOR-ASSISTED. Only a store employee has access to the tobacco product and assists the customer by supplying the product. The customer does not take possession of the product until it is purchased.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994; Am. Ord. 926, § 3, passed 11-14-2016)


All enclosed facilities owned by the City shall be subject to the provisions of this article.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


A.    Smoking shall be prohibited in all enclosed public places within the City, including, but not limited to, the following places:

1.    Elevators;

2.    Buses, taxicabs, and other means of public transit under the authority of the City, and ticket, boarding, and waiting areas of public transit depots;

3.    Restrooms;

4.    Service lines;

5.    Retail stores;

6.    All areas available to and customarily used by the general public in all businesses and nonprofit entities patronized by the public, including, but not limited to, attorneys offices and other offices, banks, laundromats, hotels, and motels;

7.    Restaurants;

8.    Public areas of galleries, libraries, and museums, when open to the public;

9.    Any facility which is primarily used for exhibiting any motion picture, stage, drama, lecture, musical recital, or other similar performance, except when smoking is part of a stage production;

10.    Sports arenas, except for outdoor facilities, which shall require a separate section designated for smoking, and convention halls;

11.    Every room, chamber, place of meeting or public assembly, including school buildings under the control of any board, council, commission, committee, including joint committees, or agencies of the City or any political subdivision of the state during the time as a public meeting is in progress, to the extent the place is subject to the jurisdiction of the City;

12.    Waiting rooms, hallways, wards and rooms of health facilities, including, but not limited to, hospitals, clinics, physical therapy facilities, doctors’ offices, and dentists’ offices;

13.    Lobbies, hallways, and other common areas in apartment buildings, condominiums, retirement facilities, nursing homes, and other multiple-unit residential facilities;

14.    Lobbies, hallways, and other common areas in multiple-unit commercial facilities; and

15.    Polling places.

B.    Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, any owner, operator, manager, or other person who controls any establishment or facility may declare that entire establishment or facility as a nonsmoking establishment.

C.    Entrances and Sidewalks.

1.    Smoking shall be prohibited within twenty (20) feet of the entrance to any business and/or along the sidewalk adjacent to the building facade of any business in the Central Business District, as that term is defined in Fort Bragg Municipal Code § 1.04.010.

2.    Any retail, nonprofit, or service-related business owner outside the Central Business District may choose to prohibit smoking within twenty (20) feet of the entrance to said business and/or along the sidewalk adjacent to the building facade in which said business is located. Such prohibition shall exist when the business owner, manager, or person having legal control thereof conspicuously posts no smoking signs that are visible from a distance of twenty (20) feet of the entrance of the building. Said signs shall reference this section of the Municipal Code and contain language similar to the following: “No smoking within twenty feet of the entrance and/or building pursuant to FBMC Section 6.18.050(C).” When posted in accordance with this provision, smoking shall be prohibited except for those persons who are passing on their way to another destination.

D.    Public Parks and Facilities.

Smoking shall be prohibited in all public parks and facilities in the City of Fort Bragg.

E.    Enforcement.

Notwithstanding Section 6.18.090 of this Chapter 6.18, any violation of Subsections C or D of this Section will be enforced by the Fort Bragg Police Department.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994; Am. Ord. 881, § 3, passed 1-26-2009; Am. Ord. 926, § 3, passed 11-14-2016)


A.    It shall be the responsibility of employers to provide a smoke-free work place for all employees, but employers are not required to incur any expense to make structural or other physical modifications.

B.    Within 90 days of the effective date of this chapter, each employer having an enclosed place of employment located within the City shall adopt, implement, make known and maintain a written smoking policy which shall contain the following requirements: “Smoking shall be prohibited in all enclosed facilities within a place of employment without exception. This includes common work areas, auditoriums, classrooms, conference and meeting rooms, private offices, elevators, hallways, medical facilities, cafeterias, employee lounges, stairs, restrooms, company owned or leased vehicles, and all other enclosed facilities.” This provision shall not apply to a sole proprietor who is a smoker, and has no employees. This section shall apply to a sole proprietor who has one or more employees, even if those employees also smoke.

C.    The smoking policy shall be communicated to all employees within three (3) weeks of its adoption.

D.    All employers shall supply a written copy of the smoking policy upon request to any existing or prospective employee.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


A.    Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter to the contrary, private residences, except when used as a child care or health care facility, shall not be subject to the smoking restrictions of this chapter;

B.    Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, any owner, operator, manager or other person who controls any establishment described in this section may declare that entire establishment as a nonsmoking establishment.

(Ord. 875, § 46, passed 8-25-2008)


A.    “No Smoking” signs or the international “No Smoking” symbol (consisting of a pictorial representation of a burning cigarette enclosed in a red circle with a red bar across it) shall be clearly, sufficiently and conspicuously posted in every building or other place where smoking is regulated by this chapter, by the owner, operator, manager, or other person having control of the building or other place.

B.    Every restaurant shall have posted at every entrance a conspicuous sign clearly stating that smoking is prohibited.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


A.    Enforcement of this article shall be implemented by the Mendocino County Department of Public Health.

B.    Any citizen who desires to register a complaint under this chapter may initiate enforcement with the Mendocino County Department of Public Health.

C.    The Public Health Department shall require, while an establishment is undergoing otherwise mandated inspections, a A”self-certification” from the owner, manager, operator, or other person having control of the establishment that all requirements of this chapter have been complied with.

D.    Any owner, manager, operator, or employee of any establishment regulated by this chapter may inform persons violating this chapter of the appropriate provisions thereof.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


A.    It shall be unlawful for any person who owns, manages, operates, or otherwise controls the use of any premises subject to regulation under this chapter to fail to comply with any of its provisions.

B.    It shall be unlawful for any person to smoke in any area where smoking is prohibited by the provisions of this chapter.

C.    It shall be unlawful for any person to discard a cigarette butt onto any street, sidewalk, gutter, storm drain, or landscape area.

D.    Any person who violates any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of an infraction, and upon conviction thereof shall be punishable as provided in Chapter 1.12.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994; Am. Ord. 874, § 14, passed 8-25-2008; Am. Ord. 895, § 2, passed 07-11-2011)


No person or employer shall discharge, refuse to hire or in any manner retaliate against any employee or applicant for employment because the employee or applicant exercises any right to a smoke-free environment afforded by this chapter.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


The Mendocino County Department of Public Health shall engage in a continuing program to explain and clarify the purposes and requirements of this chapter to citizens affected by it, and to guide owners, operators and managers of their compliance with it. The programs may include publication of a brochure for affected businesses and individuals explaining the provisions of this ordinance.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


This chapter shall not be interpreted or construed to permit smoking where it is otherwise restricted by other applicable laws.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)


If any provision, clause, sentence, or paragraph of this chapter or the application thereof to any person or circumstances shall be held invalid, the invalidity shall not affect the other provisions of this chapter which can be given effect with the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this chapter are declared to be severable.

(Ord. 768, § 1, passed -- 1994)