State Parks Officials Again Pushing to Limit Smoking in Parks
The state is again trying to ban smoking in certain areas at parks and recreational facilities after a previous attempt was thwarted by a smokers’ rights group.
The State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Recreation has proposed regulations that would prohibit smoking near playgrounds, athletic fields, swimming pools and other highly used areas at state-operated parks and historic sites. Under the plan, smoking would be restricted to designated areas within New York City’s State Parks.
The new no-smoking rules were officially proposed by the state earlier this month.
The new regulation would require the state parks commissioner to post a list of no-smoking areas. Those areas could include picnic shelters, fishing piers, marinas, concession stands and anywhere within 50 feet of buildings.
State park regulators first proposed the smoking restrictions in April, but the proposal was temporarily shelved after a smokers’ rights group filed an objection. That group — New York City Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment, or NYC CLASH — sued the state in May, alleging that any smoking prohibitions must be passed by the State Legislature.
The lawsuit is pending in state court.