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Parks may soon be smoke free

Parks and Leisure Services Commission presents smoking ban to Council

Danville's five community parks, trails and neighborhood park may soon be smoke free if an ordinance discussed at Tuesday's study session passes.

The town's Parks and Leisure Services Commission presented the Town Council with an ordinance that would ban smoking in all of Danville's recreational facilities by posting signs, providing education and fining offenders up to $100. Currently, smoking is banned within 25 feet of tot lots and playgrounds.

"This would expand the area," said Recreation Services Manager Michelle Lacy. "Since parks are spaces for improving health and fitness it seems counterintuitive to have smoking…. It seems like a logical step, especially since we like to promote a healthy lifestyle."

In January, the American Lung Association gave Danville dismal grades in its statewide smoking report. Although he couldn't think of anything that has changed in the town since then, City Attorney Rob Ewing said the parks department began considering the expanded ban in March or April.

"The council was supportive of it and five or six people spoke today (at a study session) in favor of the ban," Ewing said.

Seven cities in Contra Costa County have similar bans and Jaime Jenett, policy coordinator at the county's Tobacco Prevention Project (TPP), said those cities have received few complaints.

An ordinance to support the expanded ban is schedule to go to the Town Council on Sept. 6 and, per policy, will be read again and possibly adopted on Sept. 20. If the ban in adopted, it will take effect 30 days later on Oct. 20.

Danville owns 194 acres of recreational space; both Ewing and Lacy said the cost to put up signs about the ban in those areas would be minimal.

Comments

Posted by danville mom, a resident of Danville
on Aug 10, 2011 at 8:39 am

Whereas I do not smoke and find the smell of cigarette smoke pretty gross, I personally don't find an issue with people smoking in our town's parks. I have for severl years, and still spend a fair amount of time at our various parks and playgrounds and rarely, if ever, have encountered a problem with smoking. I think our town's money can be used in a other more productive ways.

Where I do find cigarette smoking offensive is when I make my frequent trip to Trader Joes and between the TJ employees along with the employees/friends/customers of "Z Pizza", there's almost always someone sitting either at Z Pizza or sitting on the sidewalk smoking.

At least at a park, the air is open, but next to a building, the smoke dissapates at a much slower rate.

Thank you.


Posted by Joe, a resident of Danville
on Aug 10, 2011 at 10:21 am

I can't imagine why so many young people are smoking. I work for a large corporation, and we have a lot of young people working for us. I am amazed at how many of these "kids" have to run to smoke every chance they get.


Posted by Rita, a resident of Danville
on Aug 10, 2011 at 10:27 am

My big dog has been burned twice in the face at the dog park when he approached someone's hand for a pet and encountered a lit cigarette in it. It's too bad people can't use common sense and be a little considerate of others. I love smoking, but I keep it in the backyard at home.


Posted by Nick, a resident of Blackhawk
on Aug 10, 2011 at 1:57 pm

Thank you Danville Park services...


Posted by Mona, a resident of Danville
on Aug 11, 2011 at 9:58 am

Great! Great! Great!...A very wise decision. Thank you.


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