What you need to know about … Vaughan’s Smoking By-law

Lit cigarette in a glass ashtray

By-laws are put in place to ensure a safe and orderly community for all who live, work and play in Vaughan. 


This includes the City’s Smoking By-law 074-2019 (PDF), which regulates the smoking of tobacco, cannabis, electronic cigarettes and other similar substances within Vaughan to ensure the health, safety and well-being of residents and visitors.


According to the by-law, smoking a cigar, cigarette or pipe containing tobacco, or an e-Cigarette or electronic vaporizer is not permitted in an enclosed public place, and is only allowed in certain outdoor public places. You can smoke cannabis in an outdoor public place only if you are authorized to possess cannabis for your own medical purposes or in accordance with a court order.


Smoking of all kinds in not allowed:

  • in a park, unless in a designated area.
  • in or at a City-owned facility, unless in an outdoor designated area.
  • within 20 metres of any wading pool, splashpad, skating rink, skate park, sports field, playground, tennis court or basketball court, including any spectator areas.
  • within 20 metres of any school (public or private).
  • within nine metres of the public entrance or any openable window of any childcare centre or within 20 metres of any playground under the care and control of any childcare centre.


Anyone caught violating the Smoking By-law may be fined:

  • between $100 and $5,000 for a first offence.
  • between $250 and $10,000 for a subsequent conviction.
  • between $100 and $10,000 for each offence if convicted for multiple offences.


Discarding smoking materials, such as cigarette butts, on the ground is littering and subject to a fine of at least $500 under the City’s Littering and Dumping By-law 103-2020 (PDF).


Smoking can also be a fire hazard. If you are smoking, make sure you: 

  • extinguish every cigarette or cigar fully and dispose of it in a proper ashtray that won’t tip or burn. 
  • never empty contents of an ashtray into garbage bins – this can cause a fire. Place a drop of water in the ashtray, then leave it to cool down fully.
  • never flick the butts on the ground or out of your vehicle window. If smoking at a high-rise building, ensure you extinguish all cigarette or cigar butts in a secure ashtray, away from where they can blow away or fall on below balconies.
  • never put cigarettes out in potted plants – fertilizer found in soil can catch fire. Make sure potted plants are watered regularly and planted in clay pots to avoid fires.
  • never smoke around combustible materials.


You can watch the City’s prevent smoking fires video to learn more. 


To file a complaint about smoking or littering, call Service Vaughan at 905-832-2281 or email bylaw@vaughan.ca