The Wausau Parks and Recreation committee approved a smoking ban for Wausau city parks earlier this month, but in a close 5-6 vote, city council voted against the ban.
Those in favor said it would reduce litter and make parks healthier places for families to enjoy.
Those opposed said it was too extreme and difficult to enforce.
"If you're to a point with an issue where you have to go to a full time ban, you should be able to tell the public 'we've tried this and it didn't work' or 'we've tried this and it didn't work," said Wausau City Council President and Alderperson Lisa Rasmussen. "We didn't even do that."
Council members also discussed adding cigarette disposal bins in places with heavy cigarette litter, which could be looked at in the future.
Wausau City Council also discussed adding a city administrator position to lead city department heads and help Mayor Mielke.
The idea, presented by Alderman Romey Wagner, called for a budget amendment to pay for the $100,000 position and hiring costs. Council voted 10-1 against the amendment, but several members said a discussion about an administrator position should start.
The 2018 budget passed 10-1. A $100,000 home will see a property tax increase of $25 and a $37 increase for a home of $150,000.