Thurston County Connection Newsletter
Thurston County Connection
Thurston County Connection
June, 2014
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Have a Fun and Safe, Boating Season!

Please be Safe While Swimming or Rafting.

Sheriff’s Office Awards Ceremonies

How much money did you throw in your garbage can today?

Take a Tour on Thurston County’s Bountiful Byway

Trolleys a Big Hit! (‘til it rains)

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 County Goes Tobacco Free

New rules go into effect with the New Year

New rules banning smoking, e-cigarettes and the use of other tobacco products at county buildings go into effect on January 1, 2014. County staffers have been hard at work since the county Board of Health approved the new policies back in May, and many county employees and visitors to county buildings have been reminded of the change in recent weeks as blue and white signs with the new policy information are appearing near doors and walkways on county properties.

The new sign featuring the words “cleaner air” on a blue sky background is also featured on the county’s website. The goal of the new tobacco-free policy is to reduce exposure to secondhand smoke for employees and for guests visiting county properties. Commissioners also hope the new policy will encourage employees who do use tobacco to quit the habit.

“We know there’s no such thing as a safe amount of secondhand smoke, and this new policy is a tried and tested way of reducing secondhand smoke exposure and making our facilities and campuses safer and healthier for our employees and for the public,” said Thurston County Commissioner and Board of Health Chair Karen Valenzuela.

Thurston County is one of several South Sound organizations to go tobacco free. Other government agencies and large employers have adopted similar policies in recent years including:

  • Mason County – 2006
  • Capital Medical Center – 2010
  • Providence St. Peter Hospital – 2010
  • Washington State Department of Health – 2010
  • South Puget Sound Community College – 2011


All county properties and worksites, including wholly-leased properties, will be subject to the new tobacco-free policy. Thurston County parks will not be subject to the new tobacco-free rules.

For more information on the county’s new tobacco-free policy, go to the county web site and click on the blue and white graphic with the words “Coming January 1st—cleaner air.”

By John Tennis

New rules go into effect January 1. New rules go into effect January 1.