HB325, introduced by Rep. Kaniela Ing (D, Kihei-Wailea-Makena), would amend Chapter 328J of the Hawaii Revised Statutes to prohibit smoking on all beaches in the state.
“Maui is known for our world-renown beaches. In addition to the health risk to smokers and risks caused by second hand smoke, cigarette butts are still one of the primary causes of litter on Maui.” said Representative Ing. “I introduced this measure to keep our beaches clean and ensure that both residents and visitors are able to enjoy their beach-going experiences and keep their children safe.”
Last year, Community Work Day program’s three-hour “Get the Drift and Bag it” event brought together over 1,200 volunteers that collected over 7,600 cigarette butts on Maui. Additionally, national surveys indicate that Hawaii reports between 15 and 30 cases of children ingesting cigarette butts each year. According to a poll conducted by the Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawaii 73% of respondents supported smoke-free beaches.
Ing sees this bill as a chance to facilitate discussion and see where the community currently stands on this issue. “I encourage emails and phone calls to my office and promise that all will be read and considered wholeheartedly before pushing forward this piece of legislation.” said Ing.