Atlanta Council Approves Smoking Ban in Parks

The city council voted almost unanimously to make it illegal to puff on cigarettes, cigars or pipes.

A ban on smoking in Atlanta’s parks took one more step in becoming reality Monday as the city council voted almost unanimously to make it illegal to puff on cigarettes, cigars or pipes in "city parks, athletic fields, aquatic areas, golf courses, tennis courses, hiking/walking/biking trails, playgrounds, off-leash areas, and spectator and concession areas."

District 6 City Councilman Alex Wan represents the area and told Patch recently, “We keep investing in our parks and more and more people – kids and families – are starting to use them,” Wan said. “Certainly I respect the decision of those who choose to smoke … but more people are using our parks and we want to promote healthy living there.”

Mayor Kasim Reed supports the ban, which will take effect as soon as he signs off on its approval. Exceptions for the ban were made for Midtown’s Park Tavern, Aaron's Amphitheatre at Lakewood, Chastain Park Amphitheatre and privately owned parts of Oakland Cemetery.

Fines could range up to $1,000, six months in jail or community service and penalties would be up to judge in each case.

On a similar issue, the city of . The council said they soon will try to bring back a similar ban with more community input.

What do think about the smoking ban in Atlanta? Tell us in the comments.

Editor's note: This article was originally posted in the .

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