After all the attention given to repeal of lurking and spitting ordinances by the Minneapolis City Council, there still are ordinances governing those practices on the Park Board's books.
Don't expect changes in them any time soon.
That's because the park spitting and lurking laws are more targeted and rarely enforced, according to Anita Tabb, the park commissioner who chairs the board committee with jurisdiction over ordinances.
The park spitting regulation prohibits spitting in limited circumstances -- the "floor or furnishings" of boats, canoes, buildings or walks. "If you spit on the grass, that's fine," Tabb said, no doubt relieving many runners.
The lurking ordinance applies only to "inside or about" any toilet.
Tabb said Park Police Chief Jason Ohotto, who couldn't be reached, told her that no tickets have been issued in recent years for spitting and that bathroom lurking wasn't an issue either. She'd like to keep the law against spitting inside and said banning spitting on walks keeps them from getting slippery. But she wondered out loud how one would even know about canoe-spitting; inexperienced paddlers often splash plenty of water inside the gunwales.
Although there's no evidence that the park ordinances are being applied disproportionately against minority park users, a key issue with City Hall's repeal, Tabb said a review of park ordinances for needed updates might happen down the road.
But in terms of lawbreaking, spitting and lurking seem to rank far behind the law against foot traffic on the bike path and vice versa.