Council bans e-cigarettes in Asheville transit buses, greenways and city facilities

The Asheville City Council has placed electronic cigarettes under the same regulations as traditional lighted cigarettes.

Puffing on an electronic cigarette in an Asheville city bus,  park, greenway or other city facility such as the U.S. Cellular Center could now net you a $50 fine.

Asheville City Council voted unanimously at the March 10 meeting to regulate e-cigarettes to the same extent as traditional lighted cigarettes. Council member Gordon Smith asked that the measure be singled out from the consent agenda, which resulted in a separate vote being called.

Council members had received complaints about e-cigarette vapor on city buses.

“This measure is about not exposing people to vapor, just like traditional smoking bans,” said Council member Jan Davis. “It will be banned in the same public facilities that smoking is currently not allowed in.”

Cecil Bothwell, who serves on Council’s public-safety committee, said he did extensive research online after receiving the complaints.

“The FDA has not made a ruling yet on the safety of e-cigarettes,” he said. “The problem is, there are about 250 different types of devices, and they all vary with what is contained in the vapor that is put into the air. I think it’s best to err on the side of caution.”


The action agenda is intended to provide the reader with an overview of the council meeting and any decisions that were made. It does not provide action on ceremonial or non-substantive matters.

THIS ACTION AGENDA IS FOR INFORMATION ONLY. Authority to carry out actions related to any council decision should be obtained through normal departmental procedure.

Please call the City Clerk’s office at 259-5601 if you have any questions.

Present: Mayor Esther E. Manheimer, Presiding; Vice-Mayor Marc H. Hunt; Councilman Cecil Bothwell; Councilman Jan B. Davis ; Councilman Christopher A. Pelly; Councilman Gordon D. Smith; Councilwoman Gwen C. Wisler; Acting City Manager Cathy Ball; City Attorney Robin T. Currin; and City Clerk Magdalen Burleson

Absent: None


Resolution authorizing the City Manager to enter into a construction agreement with Haren Construction Company Inc. for the North Fork Water Treatment Plant Dam Intake Tower and Conduit Repairs Project. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution authorizing the Mayor and designated City staff to perform grant related administrative tasks to access Federal Transit Administration funding. — Adopted Unanimously

Motion to adopt the Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law for the conditional use permit for the addition to the Health and Human Services Building and new 650 space parking structure located at 40 Coxe Avenue. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution authorizing the City Manager to accept the conveyance of real property at 880 New Haw Creek Road from Haw Creek Fire and Rescue Inc. for the continued operation of the City of Asheville Fire Station #12. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution amending the 2015 City Council meeting schedule to (1) cancel the City Council community meetings scheduled for the 5th Tuesdays of any month and instead hold community engagement events on specific topics throughout the year; (2) add a community engagement event regarding short term rentals on March 25, 2015, at 5:00 p.m. in the U.S. Cellular Center Banquet Hall; (3) add budget worksessions on April 28, 2015, and May 12, 2015, at 3:00 p.m. in the First Floor North Conference Room in City Hall; (4) schedule a public hearing on June 9, 2015, to consider the Fiscal Year 2015-16 Annual Operating Budget; and (5) cancel the December 22, 2015, City Council formal meeting. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution authorizing the City Manager to enter into a professional services agreement with Hazen and Sawyer for the Fairview Service Area Water System Improvements Phase II. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution authorizing the standardization of City of Asheville purchases with Mueller Systems, LLC, for the 5/8” Residential Water Meter for consistency in operation and functionality. — Adopted Unanimously

Ordinance amending Section 1-5 of the Code of Ordinances regarding changes to notice requirements for all civil penalties. — Adopted Unanimously

Technical capital project budget amendment in the amount of $16,070 to move funding for the design of the Craven Street Greenway pavilion from the General Fund to the Craven Street Project in the General Capital Projects Fund. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution authorizing the City Manager to enter into a donation of services agreement with the 26th North Carolina for the restoration of the Vance Monument, and to accept the project upon satisfactory completion of the restoration. — Adopted Unanimously

Ordinance amending the Fiscal Year 2014 Fees & Charges Manual for fee adjustments at the Aston Park Tennis Center. — Adopted Unanimously

Ordinance amending Chapter 11 of the Code of Ordinances to regulate e-cigarettes to the same extent as traditional lighted cigarettes. — Adopted Unanimously

Resolution supporting the North Carolina Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program’s Reinstatement in the North Carolina Tax Code. — Adopted Unanimously

Public hearing to consider a conditional zoning for Greymont Village Apartments, located
on Sardis Road, from Industrial District and Commercial Industrial District to RM-16 Residential Multi-Family High Density District/Conditional Zoning for the construction of a multi-family apartment development, with conditions regarding access and lot frontage. – Applicant request continuance to May 12, 2015. — Unanimously Continued to 5-12-15

Public hearing to consider a conditional zoning located off Shelburne Drive from RM-8 Residential Multi-Family Medium Density District and RS-8 Residential Single-Family High Density District to RS-8 Residential Single-Family High Density District/Conditional Zoning for a 9-lot major subdivision. – Request to continue to March 24, 2015. — Unanimously Continued to 3-24-15

Confirmation of Asheville City Board of Education interviewees: Interviews on 3-24-15 For:
Joanna Best,
Steve Dykes, Martha Geitner, James E. Lee III, Shaunda Sandford, Greg Walker Wilson

Boards & Commissions: (Council to determine who, if any, to interview)

• African American Heritage Commission: Appt DeWayne Barton & Viola Spells

• HUB Community Economic Development Alliance: Re-Advertise


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About Pat Barcas
Pat is a photojournalist and writer who moved to Asheville in 2014. He previously worked for a labor and social rights advocacy newspaper in Chicago. Email him at Follow me @pbarcas

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