New Yorkers will have to take that cigarette outside … just not to a city park, beach, or public plaza. The New York City Council on Wednesday banned smoking in all public parks. Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he will sign the bill, and it will take effect about 90 days after that. The measure divided the City Council—a rare occurrence, especially given the party breakdown of 46 Democrats and five Republicans. Opponents of the measure said they worried it would infringe on civil liberties, while supporters gave impassioned speeches about the effects of lung cancer. In the end, it passed 36 to 12. It will be enforced by the Parks Department, not police, and the fine for breaking it will be $50.
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