Schenectady could be come the latest municipality to snub smoking in its parks.
Councilwoman Barbara Blanchard proposed extending the city’s partial smoking ban to an outright prohibition at parks. She cited the zero-tolerance policies adopted by other municipalities throughout the county, including Rotterdam, Glenville, Niskayuna and Scotia.
Schenectady enacted a smoke-free policy at its playgrounds, pools, pavilions and ball fields in June 2010; the city also attached a $50 fine for any violations, though such a penalty is hardly ever levied.
Bethany Bump's July 8th story: Outdoor smoking bans increasingly popular.
Smoking had previously been banned only at Tiny Tot Land in Central Park and at city pools.
“We should be going for the whole thing,” Blanchard said during the city council’s Health and Recreation committee meeting Monday.
A survey conducted by the Capital District Tobacco-Free Coalition in Albany, Rensselaer and Schenectady counties last year found that 82 percent to 84 percent of residents support an expansion of the Clean Indoor Air Law to playgrounds. More than three-quarters of residents support expanding it to municipal pools, and more than half support expanding it to public parks and outdoor recreation areas.
Councilwoman Marion Porterfield offered no objection on extending the ban and the matter was moved to a public hearing next month.