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Waynesboro Borough Council decides to stop pursuing tobacco ban for parks

April 08, 2012|By JENNIFER FITCH | waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. — Tobacco use remains permitted in Borough of Waynesboro parks after attempts at a ban failed last week.

The Waynesboro Borough Council decided last Wednesday to stop pursuing a tobacco ban for parks. Councilman Wayne Driscoll referred to it as “an idea ahead of its time” during a council meeting.

“I didn’t get any positive comments on it, so I’m not going to push it,” he said.

On March 21, Driscoll told other council members about information he gathered in meetings with the Waynesboro Police Department, Penn State Extension and an organization called Healthy Communities Partnership.

Free signs from a “Young Lungs at Play” program could have designated parks as being tobacco free.

However, Driscoll said he received negative feedback when he solicited comments from the public.

“I think chipping away at smokers’ rights is a very hot issue,” he said.

Councilman Craig Newcomer suggested the borough’s recreation board could review the issue again in the future if it wishes.

After the council meeting, Driscoll said about a half dozen people offered thoughts to him on the ban. He said they seemed to be divided into two groups — those who wanted to smoke in the parks and those who were worried about government infringement in general.

The recreation board was split on whether to prohibit tobacco, Driscoll said.

The board overseeing Memorial Park was opposed to the ban, according to Borough Manager Lloyd Hamberger.

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