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Kathy Hochul tells smokers to leave NY state parks, beaches after ban


Smoking at state-owned beaches and parks will be banned under a law has approved Friday by Gov. Kathy Hochul.

The law will cover beaches, boardwalks, marinas, playgrounds, recreation centers and group camps. It exempts the Adirondack and Catskills parks, as well as parking lots and sidewalks at adjoining areas.

The ban will take effect in three months.

“Smoking is a dangerous habit that affects not only the smoker but everyone around them, including families and children enjoying our state’s great public places,” Hochul said. “I’m proud to sign this legislation that will protect New Yorker’s health and help reduce litter in public parks and beaches across the state.”

Local governments in many areas have already put restrictions or bans on smoking at public amenities like parks and beaches. A $50 fine for violations would be collected by local governments.

“New York’s public parks are family friendly venues. No one, especially children, should be subjected to secondhand smoke while playing on a playground or enjoying the day at a public beach or camp site,” said state Sen. Toby Stavisky, who sponsored the bill with Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz. “Our parks also shouldn’t be tainted by non-biodegradable cigarette butts scattered throughout their grounds.”

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