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Smoking Ban In Tuckahoe Parks Nears Approval

The Village board voted to continue a hearing on the proposed ban until Monday Aug. 20 when the board reconvenes, but the proposed law for regulating smoking in public parks seems close to being approved.

 

Those who smoke may need to find new places to light up as the Village of Tuckahoe inches closer to approving a new law banning smoking in many public places such as playgrounds, parks and ball fields.

The proposal to curb smoking in places where children gather was inspired by the opening of the Andrus Early Learning Center at Village Hall last spring according to Tuckahoe Mayor Steve Ecklond.

and has an outdoor play area on the property as well.

Concerned about the children's health, the village board deemed it necessary to ban smoking at Village Hall and now the board needs to decide if the residents of Tuckahoe would like to see smoking restrictions in other public areas of the village.

"In my opinion, activities involving children should not involved smoking," remarked Trustee Greg Luisi who along with the rest of the board, seemed in favor of approving the proposed law but agreed that some of the wording needed to be amended before the board would sign off on such a measure.

By definition, it is proposed that smoking be banned in the following Village locations:

  • Any property owned by the village used for sporting events such as but not limited to baseball, softball, soccer or football.
  • An outdoor area designated for children to play in, i.e. Village playgrounds, ball fields and playhouses.

The ban would not be applicable to private playgrounds such as that of a church or other institution and while the board felt positive about the laws intention, they did however question how effectively Tuckahoe Police would be able to enforce the law.

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Stating that the police are not always out at the parks around the village, the board worried about residents who may disregard the law but Maureen Kinney, representing the organization Pow'r Against Tobacco stated that law enforcement officials rarely have to step in to enforce these ordinances in her experience.

"We have found that residents themselves seem to monitor each other and with proper signage, people seem to abide by the law and smoke either in designated areas or outside of the park boundaries," said Kinney.

The penalty for smoking in non-smoking areas would be similar to laws against public consumption of alcohol or riding your bicycle on village sidewalks and Tuckahoe Police Chief John Costanzo noted that his department would be exercising discretion if the law was to take effect, giving residents time to adjust to the new ordinance.

Still, the board felt that the proposed law had many positive effects on the village, from simply increasing the overall environmental quality of the parks to intangibles such as the example adults can set for children by not smoking in their presence.

"I think it is important the example adults set for children and in theory we would like to see our residents developing healthier lifestyles," stated Trustee Thomas Giordano.

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The next Tuckahoe Board of Trustee meeting is scheduled for Monday Aug. 20 at 8 p.m. at Village Hall.

What do you think of the proposed ban on smoking in Village parks?  Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Josh Semendoff July 19, 2012 at 03:00 AM
Good point John.
Nanette Giordano July 19, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Funny as it may seem, John, may not be too far off the mark with his comment about the big mac and fries. So many restrictions and requirements of the food service industry have been put into effect in the last 10 years (menu and calorie labeling, ban of various cooking oils, etc...) and If mayor Bloomberg gets his way with his new campaign on down sizing the amount of soda one can purchase ...the Big Mac and fries may not be too far behind!!!!!!
jeff meyer July 19, 2012 at 01:44 PM
"I WOULD PREFER THAT PEOPLE SHOULD REALIZE WHEN AND WHERE IT IS APPROPRIATE TO USE TOBACCO RATHER THAN GOVERNMENT LEGISLATION" ! John, you make a great point. Actually it is the preferable path. However, if one choses to eat a Big Mac with fries the heath consequences is theirs alone. If one smokes in a crowded area or small room or around children, the health consequences could effect others. If 90% of the people do the right thing and are considerate and respectful of their neighbors you will ALWAYS have the other 10% who are self centered and could care less about their neighbors. JM Tuckahoe, NY
JOHN DEMPSEY JR. July 22, 2012 at 05:49 AM
BY THE WAY, THERE IS NOW AVAILABLE AN ELECTRIC SUBSTITUTE FOR REAL CIGARETTES THAT CONTAINS NO HARMFUL CHEMICALS / ONLY A NICOTINE DELIVERY SYSTEM THAT GIVES YOU THE FEELING THAT YOU ARE SMOKING A REAL CIGARETTE MUCH LIKE A NICOTINE PATCH BUT YOU ARE ACTUALLY PUFFING ON A FAKE CIGARETTE WITHOUT THE HARMFUL SECOND HAND SMOKE / ONLY A HARMLESS WATER VAPOR . I AM NOT RECOMMENDING THAT NON-SMOKERS TRY THIS BUT ONLY THOSE WHO ARE HAVING TROUBLE QUITTING TOBACCO. REMEMBER ,NO SMOKE OR ODOR ON YOUR CLOTHES,HAIR,CAR OR HOME. MY OWN DOCTOR COMPARED IT TO BE AS HARMFUL AS CAFFEINE. LOOK IT UP ON THE INTERNET / ONE BRAND I KNOW OF IS E-LOGIC . THIS MAY BE YOUR TICKET TO QUITTING TOBACCO FOREVER !!! GOOD LUCK ,JOHN
Josh Semendoff July 22, 2012 at 01:11 PM
Thanks for the tip John, my Dad tried that and along with about 50 other methods, sadly failed. The vapor cigarettes or electronic ones do seem to have a larger success rate than say hypnotic tapes or patches or gum.

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