Smoking Law in Effect 

A law passed by the Legislature earlier this year is modeled after a Bangor ordinance.

Maine’s statewide law outlaws smoking in cars while youths under 16 are present. The law authorizes $50 fines for violations, but for the first year police may issue only warnings.

Governor John Baldacci hailed the legislation as a strike against secondhand smoke when he signed it into law in April. He said tobacco use costs too many lives and too much money.

A number of other states, including California, Arkansas and Louisiana, and some Canadian provinces, have similar laws.