Centralia Fireside Guard

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Centralia aldermen hold wide-ranging work session

Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2019 at 6:52 am

Dust flying at city hall as council discussion ranges from tobacco penalties to body cameras

Dust flew inside, figuratively, and outside, literally, during Monday night’s discussion at Centralia City Hall.

Centralia’s aldermen hosted a combined work session and committee meeting the evening of June 10 at the Centralia City Hall Council Chambers.

The work session focused on the proposed Tobacco 21 ordinance and related issues.

Ward II alderman Robert Hudson kicked off the discussion by saying that Centralia’s business compliance rate of 16 percent with the law prohibiting tobacco sales to those under 18 is higher than the state of California.

He also was concerned with penalties, “there should be a real penalty, $300 is not enough, there should be another zero…” The penalties escalate, but he said, “our local ordinance doesn’t have any teeth in it. The state had some with the increased fines, but minimal loss of license.”

• Businesses not complying with existing law

• Minors as young as 13 having tobacco products.

Those, he said, are the main areas of concern as Hudson said.

Ward II’s Don Rodgers asked Lt. Tim Kribbs if such things would be difficult to enforce. Kribbs said it would not be difficult.

Centralia Mayor Chris Cox said “education and taking peer-pressure out of it… It belongs the home, the schools and the community to police it.” How much is it the city’s responsibility, he asked?

“Do we move the finish line for smoking, they will just go somewhere else to buy it… It’s a terrible habit,” Cox said.

For the complete article see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.