Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Dan Reed
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

Watered-down Tobacco Ordinance passes


The Carlton County Board of Commissioners, after deleting several portions of the proposed new Tobacco Ordinance, unanimously passed the Ordinance with a May 1 enforcement date. The ban on the sale of tobacco products, flavored and unflavored, and on vaping products to anyone below the age of 21 remained.

Language had been included in past drafts to restrict sales of all flavored tobacco products to those over the age of 21 except menthol, mint, and wintergreen tobacco products. This was dropped in the final draft. Several vendors and residents spoke in favor saying this was an example of government over reach and impacted older smokers and chewers who had used those products for decades.

Chair Marv Bodie stated there had been enough discussion on the ordinance and there was no need to see a revised copy of the changes before there was a Board vote.

Commissioner Gary Peterson stated via a phone conversation, “I was the one who tried to address teenage vaping use issues. Many of the local vendors have quit the sale of vaping products voluntarily. I am satisfied with the present Tobacco Ordinance passed by the Board. It falls in line with other counties and cities who have passed a Tobacco 21 ordinance.”

Health and Human Services Director Dave Lee and County Coordinator Dennis Genereau said they were directed by the County Board to address high risk behaviors in our local population that leads to rising costs of local health care. Smoking, they said, is a leading cause and the use of flavored tobacco products is of even greater concern.

Commissioner Gary Peterson has been chosen to be the AMC (Association of Municipalities and Counties) representative on the new DNR wolf plan advisory committee.

“We selected committee members to represent a range of perspectives on wolves,” said Dan Stark, DNR wolf management specialist. “We expect committee members to work constructively to identify issues, discuss differences, and explore options for enhancing wolf conservation in Minnesota.”

Commissioner Peterson requests input from anyone with concerns. Please call him at 218-380-4949.

The annual EMS (Emergency Medical Services) awards were presented at the Adjourned Meeting on February 24. Officer Steve Trenhill representing the Carlton County EMS presented the awards to:

• Andrea Peterson, EMS of the Year, working at Mercy Hospital

• Carlton County Sheriff’s Dept as the EMS Unit of the Year

• Barnum Fire Department nominated HWY 210 Automotive for their repeated support over the year for EMS citing quick response and donating cars

• Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Mike Peterson, active in the Cromwell-Wright Fire Department and the Ambulance District since 1984. When asked about his service to EMS Mike said he could think of many others who also should be recognized for their work over the years he served.


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