The New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act became in effect on March 15, 2006 and prohibits smoking in certain areas throughout the state. This act also provides for penalties to be placed on people who violate the act. But, all is not bad news for smokers in the state of New Jersey. This law also has a few exceptions as well. Smokers in New Jersey should become familiar with the places they can and can not smoke tobacco products, with this information they may steer clear of violations and penalties.
Smoking is prohibited in New Jersey in most indoor workplaces and public places. These indoor places are defined as being “a structurally enclosed place of business, commerce or other service-related property.” this includes all places where the public has access, whether privately or publicly owned, including for-profit and non-profit organizations, government buildings, restaurants, entertainment venues, waiting rooms, restrooms, retail stores, lobbies, elevators and any commercial child care provider.
Exceptions to the New Jersey Smoke Free Air Act include any tobacco bar that receives fifteen percent or more “of its total gross income from the on-site tobacco product sales and rentals,” excluding vending machines sales. Tobacco bars wishing to remain exempt from the ‘No Smoking’ law must register with the local board of health in their locale, and report it’s earnings annually, keeping the sales of tobacco products and rentals at 15% or more and not expand its size or change locations. Also exempt from this act are tobacco stores or businesses, private homes, private autos and private residences as well as casinos. Hotels and motels may have designated smoking guest rooms up to 20% of their total guest rooms.
The New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act provides for penalties for those individuals who choose to be in violation of it. These penalties are fines in the amount of $250 for the first violation, $500 for the second violation and $1000 for any violation thereafter. For companies or businesses who are found in violation of this ‘No Smoking’ act, fines of the same amount as an individual will be issued.
Smokers in New Jersey should pay attention to where they can and can not smoke. With the New Jersey Smoke-Free Air Act in effect, this should not be something they take lightly. Fines will be given out to those who choose to break the law, with each violation receiving a larger fine. This ‘No Smoking’ law was not passed to pick on smokers, but to protect individuals who are being exposed to secondhand smoke at places where they should not have to be exposed. Everyone should have the right to work or visit these places covered by this act without breathing in someone else’s secondhand smoke.