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Hudson County, Several Towns Enact Smoking Bans To Mixed Reaction

Person Smoking Outside (file / credit: clipart.com)

Person Smoking Outside (file / credit: clipart.com)

CBS New York (con't)

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JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) - Smoking bans were enacted in several parts of Hudson and Bergen Counties this week and the reaction has been mixed.

People sitting down and lighting up is a common sight on benches in places such as Pershing Field Park in Jersey City.

Many don’t like it and don’t want to see it, but others have no problem with it.

“I think once you’re outside in the environment and you’re not indoors, I think you should have the right to smoke,” one man told WCBS 880 reporter Levon Putney.

Hudson County just banned puffing in public parks. Also, North Bergen, Secaucus, and Garfield all passed ordinances this week banning smoking in public areas.

“Yes, we’re extremely excited that so many communities are interested,” said Karen Blumenthal, head of New Jersey Global Advisors for Smoke Free Policy. “Whatever we can do to create non-smoking environments, helps children not start to smoke.”

She wants the state to outlaw public smoking to avoid any confusion over laws in each town.

“People are confused as to, wait, which park is this? Is this county? Is this municipality?” she said.

About 170 governments in the state now have smoking bans.

New York City banned smoking in city parks, pedestrian plazas, and beaches in 2011.

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