Racine seeks smoking ban in recreation areas

CREATED Sep 17, 2013

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RACINE - Sara Mentink comes to the North Beach in Racine to play with her little girl. She opposes the move to ban smoking at city recreation areas.

“There are too many rules to follow, too many rules to break, and you can’t keep them all in order,” says Mentink.

The Racine Public Health Administrator proposed the smoking ban at playgrounds, beaches, parks, and sports complexes. Alderman Michael Shields plans on voting against the ban, saying it's too extreme.

“I don’t support it,” shares Shields. “I think it’s a good idea that we can have a healthy community, but this particular issue, I think we’re going beyond what we should do as a city.”

Others believe the ban isn’t necessary.

“I certainly agree with that,” says Caledonia resident, Eric Schumann. “I think the only problem is when there’s irresponsibility and non-smokers have to tolerate that.”

The Public Health Administrator says a $7,000 grant would cover the cost of putting up signs. Still, residents think the money could be saved. They say it boils down to responsibility.

“It’s their right to smoke where they want, but not to where they throw it,” adds Sara Mentink.

The majority of the council would have to vote for the ban for it to go through.