NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — First Wrightsville, then Carolina, and now Kure. All of New Hanover County’s beaches are considering putting a smoking ban in place.
“If we can get them to pick up after themselves, it would be mighty nice,” Kure Beach Mayor Dean Lambeth said.
“Teach people to not throw trash,” Carolina Beach Mayor Ray Rothrock said. “Not just cigarette butts, but not throw any trash on the ground, out the car, on the beach, anywhere. Don’t litter. That’s the solution.”
“There are many smokers who do take care of their cigarette butts, but there are many that don’t,” added Wrightsville Beach Mayor David Cignotti.
All three of New Hanover County’s beach leaders are now talking about banning butts on the beach. But some beach goers are not in favor.
“I smoke, so I just think everybody should use a can or a trash can or put them somewhere in a little pouch,” beach visitor Tammy Hawkins said.
Not all smokers are as spotless with their cigs.
The idea of a smoking ban started with Wrightsville Beach and spread down the coast. Cignotti said he thinks a ban fits the feel of Wrightsville, but says each town must decide separately.
Unlike Wrightsville, which has put the ban up for public vote, Carolina and Kure Beach town councils still have the power to approve or deny it.
“Enforcing it is going to be a problem,” Lambeth said. “It’ll mean more police and longer hours.”
“We don’t need to put another ordinance in place that we cannot enforce,” Rothrock said.
“I do think it’s enforceable,” Cignotti said. “It won’t be perfect. I’ve said before, yes, if someone wants to go and get in the water and smoke a cigarette, they can.”
Lambeth said Kure Beach is waiting for Wrightsville’s vote to make a decision. While Rothrock says Carolina Beach may say yes or no as early as next month.