The tobacco smoking ban was back in the agenda for Erie County Council this morning, but no decision has been made yet.
The council was supposed to vote on the ban to decide whether or not they will make it illegal to smoke in recreational parks and playgrounds in the city. While there was an ordinance already written up, council decided to go back to the drawing table.
Many of the Council Members wanted to discuss the ordinance more and look at more options that would be fair to smokers. They will now be looking at having designated smoking areas in certain parts of the parks.
This ban has been in the works since June. Officials from the Health Department advocated for this ban, stressing the dangers of second hand smoke. Meanwhile, there are some people opposed to the ban, saying it limits what people can do in public parks.
“This is America. It is the great outdoors. If they want to designate a smoking area in the park, we need to come up with that area—whether all the parks, how it’s going to be enforced, just items like that,” said Jim Winarski, City Council President.
The tobacco ban is expected to be back on the City Council’s agenda at the next meeting in two weeks.