You can forget about lighting up in New York state parks, as the state’s Court of Appeals ruled unanimously on Thursday that the state’s Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation did not overstep its bounds by banning smoking.
The policy, which dates back to Feb. 2013, has been held up in the legal system, largely at the request of a group known as NYC Citizens Lobbying Against Smoker Harassment, or NYC C.L.A.S.H.. Edward Paltzik, the group’s attorney, has described the ban as government overreach, adding that such a decision must come from the state legislature.
While the court acknowledged that a ban on smoking could be argued as an infringement of an individual’s rights, the broadness of such an argument is incorrect. The ruling included the statement that “the exercise of an individual right is not limitless. We may measure its limits against the damage it does to our neighbors.”