SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - It will soon be a lot tougher to buy cigarettes in Carpinteria. The city passed a temporary ban on new retailers who sell tobacco products.
Carpinteria was the first city in Santa Barbara County to pass a smoking ordinance that limited where people can light up.
Now, the city is considering expanding those rules to include where people can sell tobacco products.
Ana Delgado is a teenager in Carpinteria. She says a lot of her friends struggle with temptation to smoke. And she adds, teens have easy access to cigarettes.
Recent sting operations prove it. A number of stores in the city were caught selling tobacco to minors.
"As small as Carpinteria is, they are actually giving more tobacco to minors than, like, Goleta and Santa Barbara. So, that's really sad," said Delgado.
City leaders decided to take action.
"We're trying to be proactive," explains Mayor Brad Stein.
During Monday's City Council meeting, they passed a temporary ban to prevent any new businesses from selling tobacco products until they are able to hammer out the permanent ordinance.
The new set of rules could include banning businesses from selling tobacco within 1,000 feet of any school or public place. It will also crack down on where people can light up.
"Continuing what Carp has been doing for years, bringing us a healthier family oriented community," said Stein. "Smoke free."
Those against the ordinance say the city is taking it too far.
"Most of all the business in the city have a school next to them within 1,000 feet. Again, I don't think the city should have their foot in that part of business," says resident Don Risdon.
The ban will not affect stores that are already in business. The council is expected to revisit the issue at the next meeting.