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Yorkville stresses no-smoking rules in city parks

The Yorkville City Council unanimously approved an update of park rental policies and forms to include the new non-smoking policy that is in place at city’s parks.

“It’s something our staff and park board have discussed,” said Tim Evans, director of parks and recreation. “[Members of Teens Reaching Youth Club at Yorkville High School] were the ones that came to the park board and city council to work with us on reviewing our non-smoking policy.”

City officials in November 2015 approved an ordinance prohibiting smoking in Yorkville parks.

The policy stipulates that smoking means the carrying, smoking, burning, inhaling or exhaling of any kind of lighted pipe, cigar, cigarette, tobacco, e-cigarettes or other smoking materials and/or equipment.

Evans said the policy is intended to be enforced by city employees and officials, not necessarily those in law enforcement.

“This is more of an honor system type thing,” Evans said.

Evans said while the policy is deemed difficult to enforce, the recently approved update of rental policies gives staff the instruction to intervene during situations where persons fail to comply with the rule.

“I don’t know if it was addressed,” Evans said of why the new rule hadn’t been included in park policies until the idea was raised by residents. “Usually, that’s how a lot of policies are addressed.”