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No smoking signs added to Medford parks

I understand that the city of Medford banned smoking in public parks some time ago, yet I am hard-pressed to find this fact displayed. I have seen only one sign in Bear Creek Park; that being near the skate park. We desperately need more signs throughout the park and particularly at the entrance to the dog park. There, inconsiderate smokers continue to subject adults, dogs and the children that also go there to the collateral damage of their addiction. — Concerned taxpayer

The Medford Parks and Recreation Department has been working to add dozens of no smoking signs to parks since the Medford City Council unanimously banned smoking and tobacco products at city facilities in the spring of 2014.

So far, the department has installed 41 no smoking signs at parks, including four at Bear Creek Park, park workers said.

The department plans to act quickly in regard to your concern about smoking at the dog park.

"Currently there is not a tobacco and smoke free sign at the dog park," Park Maintenance Supervisor Tim Stevens said Monday. "I will have staff add one this week."

Violators are subject to a $250 fine.

Chewing tobacco, cigarettes, cigars, electronic cigarettes, lighted pipes and the smoking of other lighted plant materials are banned at parks, city buildings and the grounds around buildings.

There is a designated smoking area at U.S. Cellular Community Park, home to a variety of events, including baseball and softball tournaments.

People who witness smoking or tobacco use at city facilities can call the Medford Police Department's non-emergency number at 541-770-4783 to report violators, according to police.

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