E-cigarette ban for city workers on the job could take effect this week

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) - Boise City Council is considering a policy change that would ban city employees from using electronic cigarettes in and around the workplace.

Cigarettes, pipes and snuff are already off limits on the job. E-cigarettes could soon join the list.

"Since our policy didn't consider that -- it didn't include e-cigarettes -- and we do want very much to have a drug-free workplace, we made the decision that we would present to the council the possibility of changing our policy to include e-cigarettes," said Adam Park, city spokesman.

Allisa LeValley of Boise started using e-cigs a year and a half ago. She says they're cheaper and allow her to smoke inside, but she understands the city's position.

"They still have it banned inside bars because it's the act of smoking, it's unappealing," LeValley said, "so it would kind of be understandable. I know a lot of people wouldn't like it."

City employees would not be allowed to use e-cigarettes near entrances to city buildings, in city parks or in city vehicles. Violations would be a personnel matter that supervisors would address.

"I think that would be a little bit strict for the city to try to enforce that," said Priscilla Plafcan of Boise. "I don't think that would be really necessary."

The proposal is on city council's consent agenda. Park says it will likely pass and take effect Wednesday. City leaders are also taking a look at how other cities are handling e-cigarette use by the public.