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SF puts cork in banning wine bottles in public parks

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A woman studies in the shade while enjoying a drink in a glass bottle at Mission Dolores Park in San Francisco, Calif. Monday, October 23, 2017. (Daniel Kim/Special to S.F. Examiner)

San Francisco put a cork in banning wine bottles in public parks Tuesday.

Supervisor Jeff Sheehy said he needed more time to work out the details of legislation he introduced that would ban glass beverage containers in all public parks, including wine bottles.

The proposal was initially created to address the trashing of Dolores Park.

“We’ve spoken to various stakeholders, in particular those who hold events in the park, including Stern Grove,” Sheehy said. “There are more additional technical issues we need to work out. Therefore I am making a motion to re-refer this back to committee.”

SEE RELATED: SF to prohibit glass containers in public parks, litter fines stall for Dolores Park

When the proposal was voted on by a board committee in September, Supervisor Hillary Ronen suggested banning all glass may not go over as smoothly at Stern Grove, where music festivals and picnics are common. “Would wine bottles be allowed, for example, at Stern Grove?” she asked at the time.

When told they wouldn’t be, she joked, “This will be a big behavior change, Supervisor Sheehy.”

The return to the committee is only the latest setback to the initial proposal. In September, Sheehy walked back the most controversial aspect of his initial proposal, which would have created a fine of up to $1,000 for littering in Dolores Park at the discretion of park patrol rangers.

Opponents argued the fine enforcement would lead to targeting certain groups of people and unfairly penalize low-income residents.

Sheehy’s legislative aide Bill Barnes said Sheehy’s intent is to exempt private events requiring permits, like those at Stern Grove, since conditions of permits would require proper cleanup.

Barnes said the proposal wouldn’t be taken up by a committee until next year.

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