Are we going bylaw-crazy?

Brydon Roe

I am not a smoker and can’t say I love the aroma of cigarette smoke, however I think we are moving toward a police state with the inception of a number of new bylaws, including one that would extend the ban on  smoking.

Didn’t know this was coming up?

The proposed bylaw wants the smoking ban to include:


  • all City of Revelstoke property;
  • city-owned parks;
  • outdoor recreational facilities on city property including sports fields, grandstands, seating areas, bleachers and similar structures;
  • cemeteries;
  • trails and paths on city property, including pathways maintained by the city; and
  • on streets and sidewalks when there is a parade or an event-related street closure.


However, it doesn’t ban smoking on city streets including sidewalk patios. Getting caught smoking where you are not supposed to will cost you up to $200.

Can we not allow our citizens to handle these situations, and themselves without having to issue tickets for bylaw violations from expensive bylaw officers?

I question the economics of these bylaw officers in general.

I am sure I must have been in a situation where I had to move away from an inconsiderate smoker, not that I can recollect now but I am sure it has happened.  In this situation I used my will and my own decision making to deal with the issue.  I did not find myself searching for a bylaw officer to issue a ticket to a person to rectify the situation.

I can see that we enforce non-smoking at entrances etc by posting city bylaws but I don’t know that we need to have a bylaw officer issuing tickets.  I think we can leave this up to the business owners and or citizens to police.

Maybe the thought is to create a threat, which I think is not a bad idea, to make people think they could get a ticket if they were to break the bylaws?

I think we have a much larger concern with regard to smoking then the odd puff in your face.  I would say, our biggest concern is litter.  It has become common place for smokers to chuck their butts on the street, which is blatant littering, this is illegal and it leaves our streets and sidewalks looking downright terrible.  I think the city should consider a positive way to deal with this… send a message…

“We all love our town and our wonderful river, don’t throw your butt it ends up washing into our river” etc etc    or use something catchy and encouraging to keep our city clean.  Why not try to encourage people in a positive way and get them to embrace a message as opposed to getting ticked off with bylaw officers writing tickets.

A public campaign to educate the smoking public and emphasize beautifying our town would be a great positive direction.

I would argue this is a real issue.  Let citizens use common sense in some incidences, lets not pull out the ticket book for every issue that may arise or need to be dealt with.

Empower the people to take a little pride, and do the right thing, we may have more luck and it will cost us less!

What do you think about this? Does it go too far or not far enough.

City Council is still accepting public comment on this issue.

Brydon Roe is a citizen of Revelstoke