Issue 5 was passed on the November 7, 2006 ballot to protect all workers and the public from exposure to dangerous second-hand smoke in workplaces and public places. The Smoke-Free Workplace Act  enforcement began on May 3, 2007.

Ohio’s Smoke Free Workplace Act was implemented in 2006 and requires places of employment and public places to be smoke free. Violations of the Smoke Free Workplace Act are investigated and enforced by the Smoke Free Workplace Program in the Bureau of Regulatory Operations at the Ohio Department of Health.

The general purpose of the law is to prohibit smoking in all enclosed public places and places of employment. Ashtrays are prohibited in all areas where smoking is prohibited. Approved “No Smoking” signs, featuring the “No Smoking” symbol and the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) hotline number for reporting violations, must be conspicuously posted at all building entrances. Smoking is allowed outdoors; however, it must occur at a sufficient distance from the building to prevent infiltration of smoke into the building. Smoking can occur on patios, as long as the patio does not have walls or side coverings on more than two (2) sides.

The Medina County Health Department is responsible for investigating all alleged violations that occur in Medina County. Reports of alleged violations are made by calling the ODH hotline. ODH then forwards the reports to us locally for investigation. Investigations can consist of telephone interviews and/or on-site investigations, depending on how many prior investigations an establishment has had.

A warning is issued for the very first violation found. If a business is subsequently found in violation, fine levels range from $100 to $2500 dollars, depending on the number of prior violations. Fine levels must be doubled if a violation is deemed “intentional.”

*******Please note that reports of violation cannot be made to Medina County Health Department.*********

To report a violation, contact the Ohio Department of Health (ODH) Enforcement Hotline at 866-559-6446 or visit