Summerville considers outdoor smoking ban at public parks, ball fields

    Discarded cigarette butts. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

    Smoking could soon be restricted in Summerville public parks and other outdoor venues.

    "I think that's a great idea," said Casey Nunnemaker. "For everyone’s health, it’s something that should be done away with in public areas."

    Summerville Town Council is expected to vote Thursday to amend the town's smoking ban ordinance to include all public venues, including public outdoor spaces operated by the town, such as parks, stadiums, ball fields and playgrounds.

    The town rules also would be amended to prohibit smoking on public streets and on town property during parades.

    The town already has an indoor smoking ban in place for workplaces and other public settings such as restaurants and retail stores.

    Town officials say the proposed ordinance would allow exceptions for designated smoking areas and cigarette butt receptacles in the parking lots of parks and other outdoor venues.

    "If you give them a designated smoking area rather than having free way all over the park, I think that's a good idea," said Jordan Taylor. She said she walks her dog in Azalea Park nearly every day.

    "I think it would be good because you have a lot of children, elderly people, people from all ages," Taylor added.

    There is no language in the proposed amendment specifying what punishments would apply for those caught smoking outside designated areas.

    Officials say the main goal of the ban is to eliminate litter of cigarette butts.

    The proposed ordinance does not mention electronic cigarettes.

    Thursday's town council meeting starts at 6 p.m. at the Summerville Municipal Complex.

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