Local citizens and police have concerns with new Park Law

Local citizens and police have concerns with new Park Law

Last night, The city of Pendleton passed a new law banning smoking in all local parks for at least two years, trying to reduce cigarette butts and protect from Tobacco. However, some citizens thinks it won’t have a major impact.

Pendleton Resident Dustin Raines goes to Community Park weekly with his son to spend time with him at the playground.

Raines wants tobacco use to reduce in public parks, but questions if this is the route to go to decrease it.

“They (Police) can’t watch everybody,” said Raines. “Even if they’re walking through the park, they can’t see at what’s everybody is doing.”

In order to receive a citation for the smoke ban violation, police have to see the person smoking, and according to Pendleton PD Chief Stuart Roberts, his officers may arrive too late if someone calls on a violator.

“That’s gonna be a relatively low priority,” said Roberts. “We will get there if somebody’s available who will be eminent. If we don’t, it’s a wait situation.”

Roberts also questions if this law will help curb the urge of tobacco use.

“Does a citation in it itself really cause somebody to reconsider whether or not smoking or using tobacco products is appropriate for them,” said Roberts.

The law takes effect a month from now.

Chief Roberts predicts the fine will range between $100-$150 and will increase every time the violator gets caught.