City Quietly Starts Enforcing Parks Smoking Ban

04/20/2012 11:30 AM |

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When the ban on smoking in public parks went into effect last May, the city said it would rely on New Yorkers to enforce the law amongst themselves. We explained at the time:

If someone asks you to stop smoking and you don’t, they can call 311 or go get a grown-up, who might have the authority to fine you $50.

From Memorial Day weekend to New Year’s Eve last year, the parks department issued just 84 summonses for violating the ban. But so far this year, not even four full months in, it has given out 108, Metro reports. “The Parks Department has begun quietly increasing enforcement of the ban.”

The parks commissioner told the free daily that in his experience, the violators are usually tourists unfamiliar with the law. “And they were immediately compliant and apologetic,” he said. Except for the 108 who weren’t, I guess?

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