Jefferson County Commissioners Kate Dean, David Sullivan and Kathleen Kler approved a grant from the Kitsap Public Health District to help the Jefferson County Public Health implement intervention strategies for tobacco, vapor and marijuana products. (Cydney McFarland/Peninsula Daily News)

Jefferson approves $50,000 deal aimed at curbing tobacco, vaporizer and marijuana use

PORT TOWNSEND — The Jefferson County commissioners have approved an agreement that would fund the development of intervention strategies for tobacco, vaporizer and marijuana products by Jefferson County Public Health, specifically working to deter the use of those products by local youth.

The agreement was approved unanimously as part of the commissioners’ consent agenda Monday.

The agreement is with Kitsap Public Health District, which will fully fund the $50,000 project through a grant from the state Department of Health.

The project is meant to help Jefferson County Public Health develop and implement strategies as part of a regional effort to educate and conduct outreach to keep local youths off tobacco, vapor and marijuana products.

As part of the agreement, Jefferson County Public Health will work with Peninsula College at its Port Townsend campus, and Jefferson County Board of Health and will be monitored by the Kitsap Public Health District to ensure the project is being carried out.

Kitsap Public Health also will be providing guidance as necessary, according to the agreement signed at the commissioners’ meeting.

Part of the outreach would involve discussing the possibility of a smoke- and vaporizer-free campus at Peninsula College and following up on or creating new county policies on tobacco and vaporizer use.

One of the possibilities specified in the agreement was the inclusion of vaporizer use in the local Smoking in Public Places Ordinance.

Jefferson County Public Health also hopes to reach out to local community organizations like the Boiler Room, Dove House Advocacy Services, Jefferson Mental Health and local transgender support groups — which were identified as stakeholders in implementing intervention strategies around health equity.

The project also identified Port Townsend, Chimacum, Quilcene and Brinnon school districts as important stakeholders in youth prevention.

The agreement runs from July 1 to June 30, 2018, and totals $50,000. That money will cover the salaries of project coordinators, supplies, travel expenses and other potential expenditures related to the program.

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Jefferson County Editor/Reporter Cydney McFarland can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 55052, or at cmcfarland@peninsuladailynews.com.

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