Crawford bans vaping from city parks and property

By Jared Castañeda

The Crawford board, following up on its Feb. 22 meeting, discussed several policy updates last Thursday, May 16, most notably a public hearing for dumpsters and a bill addressing vaping in public spaces.

The board opened the meeting with an introductory local law that would expand dumpster rules citywide. If adopted, property owners would be required to properly close their dumpsters with lids, screen them with shrubs or other landscaping, and protect them from the view of neighbors. If an owner cannot meet these conditions, he must request an exemption from the planning agency to adjust the requirements. In addition, owners no longer need permission from the planning board to place or move waste containers.

Supervisor Charles Carnes explained that he and the board have recently noticed several dumpsters popping up around town, especially in residential areas, and they want to keep Crawford nice by minimizing their appearance. The board then requested that the bill be sent to the city attorney for further review.

“We’re basically trying to make the community look nice because the community is changing; people who come to live there are not familiar with the rules,” Carnes said, referring to residents who place dumpsters without knowing the rules. “The board needs to do something during meetings and open days so that these new people know what is going on.”

The board then passed a local law expanding the city’s smoking policy to include vaping. Going forward, smoking and vaping are prohibited on or within 50 feet of city property, including buildings, parks, structures and facilities such as playgrounds and sports fields.

Leilani Lockett, community engagement and lead coordinator of POW’R Against Tobacco, and Alayne Eisloeffel, program director and project coordinator of the Tri-County Prevention Coalition, thanked the board for passing this law and emphasized the importance of protecting children and pets from secondhand smoke.

“Vapers don’t consider themselves smokers, so we want to make sure our parks and playgrounds are safe places, especially for our very young children and teens,” said Lockett, who offered the board free no-smoking and no-vaping policies. ‘ signage. “We would love to work together again to also host a celebration of how clean the air is in the parks in the city of Crawford.”

“We are very concerned about the little children and teenagers in our community, so I want to thank you for your consideration and thank everyone who supports this,” Eisloeffel said. “We just hope that we can educate our kids a little bit more and set a good example.”

After the vaping vote, the board passed a local law to maintain the city’s fire districts after the city’s transition to a coterminous urban village last December. Although no village has ever been incorporated into the city, this law ensures that the Pine Bush Fire District and the Bullville Fire District will continue to operate normally as if the consolidation had never occurred.