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Council Passes Bill To Ban Smoking In All City Parks

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- The limits on just where you cannot smoke in the City of Pittsburgh are about to change.

It's already illegal to smoke at city playgrounds, but the bill passed by Council now includes all city parks.

Councilman Corey O'Connor sees it as a health issue.

"When we look at our parks system, they've become really the outdoor gym and activity center for a lot of people that have moved to the City of Pittsburgh and we want to provide them with the best quality of life possible," O'Connor said.

Paul Boyer, who walks daily at Schenley Park, understands the playground rule but says the place to allow smoking is in open spaces that are not confined.

"I don't think it's a very good idea banning it in the park," Boyer said. "It's not like it's a confined area, and it's an individual choice."

Even so, enforcement will not be easy and will not mean police patrolling the parks looking for smokers.

KDKA's Harold Hayes: "No fines or jail time, nothing like that?"

O'Connor: "There's nothing to that extent unless somebody goes overboard to where our park rangers that we have set up right now in Schelney Park… it's more or less going to help them say, 'Hey, here are the rules and regs in the park.' Now if somebody is blatant and doesn't want to follow the rules and regulations, that's when an officer would be called."

All the smoking bill needs at this point is the mayor's signature.

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