Interim smoking ban set to become permanent law
THE interim local law that banned smoking in the Ipswich Mall and other public places in the city will become permanent on August 1.
Ipswich City Council introduced the interim law on February 1 with a fine of $110, which was doubled for anyone failing to comply with a verbal direction from an authorised officer not to smoke.
The ban means people are fined if they smoke in the following locations:
At all taxi ranks, within 4m of any taxi rank sign on local government-controlled roads.
Within 4m of any bus stop sign erected at the bus stop on local government-controlled roads.
Within 4m of any bus stop seats on local government-controlled roads.
The mall in Nicholas St, Ipswich, between Limestone and Brisbane Sts.
The mall in Union St.
The mall in Nicholas St, Ipswich, between Brisbane St and the north end of Nicholas St.
Cr Paul Tully said 421 tickets had been issued, mostly for $110 each, while some were issued for $220 for failing to comply with a verbal direction by an authorised officer to cease smoking.
"It's operated as an interim local law for the past six months and it will become a permanent feature of our city," Cr Tully said.
"I think it's been widely hailed and generally accepted by most persons in the community.
"It is part of our push to have a cleaner and healthier Ipswich."
After the interim law was introduced, Queensland Council for Civil Liberties president Michael Cope described as a step towards a nanny state.
Mr Cope said the Ipswich Mall was an open area where cigarette smoke could be avoided and smoking was a personal choice.
"Our position on smoking in public areas is that while we understand why these things are banned, our concern is it becomes the thin end of the wedge when it comes to being a nanny state," he said.
Mayor Paul Pisasale fired back, saying Ipswich was not a nanny state and the council was not banning smoking.
"Mr Cope doesn't know what he is talking about. It's a confined space where we are trying to create clean air," he said.
"We have had constant complaints where people have misused the privilege and stubbed their butts into the ground or in gardens and the community have then had to clean them up."