Re. Editorial: Newport should ban smoking in parks, July 17: Newport Beach is to be commended for finally embracing what more than 1,500 other cities nationwide have already adopted in its recently proposed ordinance for broader smoking restrictions. It is time to protect public health and environmental quality of the city's greatest asset — its coastal, park and open areas.
Many of Newport's private commercial/retail and health-care establishments have already established practices for a smoke-free environment, as one can see in such high-profile locations as Newport Center and the Hoag Hospital campus.
There is a statewide established distance from public buildings. The U.S. surgeon general has established secondhand smoke as a carcinogen. In addition to the health threat, there are multiple nuisance impacts caused by regular concentrations of smokers, such as litter, fire hazards and group loitering.