Johnson City smoking ban could face legal trouble

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (AP) -- A smoking ban in city parks could run afoul of state law.

The Johnson City commission recently banned smoking in public parks, but Nashville has put off a decision on a similar ban after Attorney General Bob Cooper said Metro Parks has no authority over smoking in parks.

Cooper's opinion says a 1994 state law allows local governments to enact smoking bans only in buildings they own.

Johnson City Manager Pete Peterson said he was unaware of the attorney general opinion, but would have the city's legal counsel look into it.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)