LEWISBORO, N.Y. – A law that would prohibit smoking in Lewisboro town parks and public playgrounds took another step toward becoming a reality this week when the town board voted to hold a public hearing on the matter.
The idea for the law was first discussed last August when Makeda James of POWR - Putnam, Orange, Westchester - Against Tobacco gave the town board a presentation on smoke-free parks. POWR Against Tobacco works to promote clean air and keep tobacco out of the hands of minors.
Supervisor Peter Parsons said the idea has remained on the back burner for too long and he wants to have the law in place by summer.
“Nothing happened with the idea,” he said. “But I’ve spoken with [Parks and Rec Director] Dana Mayclim and the Parks and Rec Committee and they said, ‘why don’t we get it done?’”
Parson said if all goes smoothly at the public hearing, slated for March 26, he hopes to have the “No Smoking” signs up in time for baseball season.
“I’m not anticipating too much resistance,” he said. “I don’t think it’s that contentious. We will probably pass it on the same night as the public hearing. I don’t think we should delay on things that everyone agrees on.”
Parson said the fine for smoking in the park would be $100 with the possibility of losing your town permit to use the pool and other facilities, which costs as much as $250.
However, Parsons said he doesn’t expect that to ever happen.
“We don’t anticipate a single person being brought to court over this,” he said. “You can just ask someone, ‘Can you do me a favor and put that out?’ If the moral persuasion doesn’t work, now you have something that can back up the request – the signs. They’re four times more powerful. If you decide it’s obnoxious enough, you can pull out your cell phone and call [Police Chief] Frank Secret. But the bottom line is we don’t want to encourage kids by smoking in front of them.”