This story was originally published on February 22nd, last updated on March 22nd.

Newport City Council is looking to tackle cigarette butts and litter on the city’s sidewalks by holding local merchants more responsible for making sure the area in front of their businesses are clean of cigarette butts and debris.

At their March 22nd meeting, Newport City Council voted 7-0 to pass a resolution that is “Requesting the City Administration to draft an ordinance requiring merchants to pick up cigarette litter”.

The ordinance will be intended to hold local merchants responsible for making sure the area in front of their businesses are clean of cigarette butts and debris. The resolution goes on to also ask city administration to “review current ordinances related to litter and fines”.

The resolution was sponsored by Councilor’s Ceglie, Florez, Taylor, Napolitano and Leonard.

Current City Ordinances Related To Litter

A current Newport City Ordinance, “8.24.120. – Prohibited activities”, specifies littering in the following way – “Littering. Litter barrels are provided in parks and on sidewalks solely for the collection of litter from pedestrian traffic. No person shall place or allow to be placed any solid waste upon roads, streets or public or private property in the city contrary to this chapter.”

Currently, littering is also considered a public nuisance in ordinance “9.17.010. – Public nuisance” – “Illustrative of such unlawful conduct for purposes of this ordinance is excessive noise or traffic, obstruction of public streets by crowds or vehicles, illegal parking, public drunkenness, public urination, the service of alcohol to minors, fights, disturbances of the peace and litter; illegal drug activity, and the illegal use of fireworks.”

Current Ordinance “5.98.030. – Standards” states “A sidewalk café shall close and all cafe seating shall be removed from the cafe area no later than eleven p.m. The cafe area shall be cleared of all furniture, obstructions and trash and swept clean of litter, cigarette butts and other debris no later than midnight.”

In 2015, Newport City Council adopted ordidnance “12.32.130. – Smoking prohibited on public beaches, in public parks and cliff walk” which states “No person shall smoke a cigarette, cigar, or other tobacco-related product on or within any beach or public park owned, operated, maintained or managed by the city.”

Resolution Proposing  New Ordinance

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Ryan M. Belmore

Ryan M. Belmore is the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and serves on the Board of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and Lucy's Hearth. Send questions, tips, and story ideas to Ryan@whatsupnewp.com.