Okotoks has become the first municipality in Alberta to ban smoking in vehicles carrying children 16 years old and younger.

The town council voted four to two in favour of the ban on Monday night.

Mayor Bill McAlpine and Coun. Beth Kish opposed the bylaw, saying the issue should be dealt with on a provincial level.

First offenders will face a $200 fine, but councillors have acknowledged that it will be difficult to enforce the bylaw.

Public opinion in the bedroom community 45 kilometres south of Calgary was split between protecting children's health and protecting what people choose to do in their private lives.

In June, Ontario became the third province, along with Nova Scotia and British Columbia, to pass a law banning smoking in a vehicle with a child present.

Okotoks town council now plans to lobby the Alberta government to enact similar legislation for the whole province.