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Hempstead OKs ban on smoking at parks

A Long Islander smokes outdoors. (April 5, 2011)

A Long Islander smokes outdoors. (April 5, 2011) Photo Credit: Newsday/John Paraskevas

Hempstead Village residents will soon be barred from smoking in village parks, village officials said.

That’s because the village board last week approved a smoking ban in village parks. The board passed an amendment of Chapter 95-14 of the village code prohibiting smoking in any village park. The amendment has been filed with the state Department of State and will go into effect within a few weeks, officials said.

The current law prohibits public consumption and open containers of alcoholic beverages in village parks but does not address smoking.

Once the amendment goes into effect, smoking tobacco or any other substance in village parks will be prohibited. Village parks officials also will install new signs warning residents that smoking is not allowed on their grounds.

“This amendment has the best interests of all of our residents at heart and will be a health benefit for our entire community,” Mayor Wayne J. Hall Sr. said in a statement. “My administration took a major step in curbing the influx of new bars and liquor stores into our Village and this next step will continue to improve the quality of life for our residents.”

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