Tonawanda News — “They’re way different now; nobody is being told, ‘no smoking.’ The (new) signs are more like suggestions ... and it’s up to each person to decide” whether to take the suggestion, he said.
Ross, who’s always been ardently for the signs, even the more strongly worded ones, credited coalition director Anthony Billoni with keeping the issue alive in Niagara County. Billoni stayed in touch with Public Health Director Daniel Stapleton, who in turn kept after him the past couple of years to get other legislators to embrace it.
Ross cites a list of municipalities in Erie and Niagara counties that have enacted their own smoke-free parks ordinances — Hamburg, Williamsville, Alden, Amherst, Orchard Park, Springville, Colden, Eden, Niagara Falls, Royalton, the Village of Wilson — and says a policy discouraging smoking around children is the least the county can do for its young people. It’s not a law like the one passed by the Erie County Legislature, which is subject to police enforcement.
“I think a tobacco-free policy is important for our parks. It’s not earth-shattering, it’s just a little reminder,” Ross said. “It’s a good first step. We’ll see how it goes.”