SALEM, Ore. - The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department is seeking public comment and plans a Jan. 14 hearing in Bend on proposed rule changes that would control smoking in outdoor areas of Oregon State Parks.
The proposed changes, which can be found at http://tinyurl.com/oregonstateparksmoking, are designed in part to reduce litter and protect natural resources in Oregon's state parks.
Smoking is already prohibited in public buildings in the parks. The draft rule change proposes to limit smoking to personal vehicles, tents, and RVs, plus campsites in developed overnight camping areas. The current proposal does not apply to the ocean shore, which is managed by OPRD.
Public hearings have been scheduled during January at the following locations:
1/7/2014 Josephine Community Library, 200 NW C Street, Grants Pass OR
1/9/2014 Champoeg State Heritage Area, Visitor Center, 8239 Champoeg Road NE, St. Paul OR
1/14/2014 Bend Park and Recreation Office, Riverbend Room, 799 SW Columbia Street, Bend OR
1/16/2014 Newport Recreation Center, 225 Avery St SE, Newport OR
All public hearings begin at 7:00 PM and those wishing to make a comment must register with the hearings officer by 7:30 PM.
Comments may also be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org and written comments may be sent to Richard Walkoski, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, 725 Summer St. NE, Suite C, Salem OR 97301. Public comments will be accepted until 5:00 PM on January 17, 2014.
If passed, the rule would become effective March 1, 2014, but state park staff wouldn't start enforcing it until January 2015, and instead spend 2014 educating visitors about the change.