Smoking and the use of Electronic Cigarettes under the New York City Smoke-Free Air Act (Chapter 10)
Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments
Statement of Basis and Purpose
On December 30, 2013, Local Law 152 was enacted. It amended sections 17-502, 17-503, 17-504, 17-505, 17-506, 17-507, 17-508, 17-510, 17-512 and 17-513.2 of Chapter 5 of Title 17 of the New York City Administrative Code (Smoke-Free Air Act). It also added sections 17-513.3 (Retail Tobacco Store and Retail Electronic Cigarette Store Registration), and 17-513.4 (Retail Tobacco Store and Retail Electronic Cigarette Store Verification) to Chapter 5. These changes to the Smoke-Free Air Act took effect on April 29, 2014. The local law prohibits the use of electronic cigarettes in all locations where smoking is currently prohibited and requires establishments to post signage informing customers of these new restrictions. Local Law 152 also requires both retail tobacco stores and retail electronic cigarette stores to register with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (“DOHMH”), and grants the Department authority to establish a system for verifying the total annual gross sales of retail tobacco stores and retail electronic cigarette stores to determine their eligibility for certain smoking and electronic cigarette use exemptions.
The Department is proposing to amend Chapter 10 of Title 24 of the Rules of the City of New York (RCNY) to reflect the amendments to the Smoke-Free Air Act in Local Law 152, and repeal provisions of Chapter 10 that are no longer applicable due to these amendments to the Smoke-Free Air Act. The amendments proposed here will also clarify certain provisions in Chapter 10 to facilitate compliance with, and enforcement of, the Smoke-Free Air Act. These proposed amendments, together with the provisions of Chapter 5 of Title 17 of the Administrative Code, affect the use of electronic cigarettes in enclosed areas in public places and in places of employment in New York City.
The proposed amendments:
· Specify the locations where electronic cigarette use is prohibited;
· Specify the content of the signage required in locations where electronic cigarette use is prohibited;
· Describe the registration requirements for retail tobacco stores and retail electronic cigarette stores; and
· Repeal obsolete provisions of the Department’s Rules related to separate smoking rooms in bars and owner operated bars that have been repealed in the Smoke-Free Air Act.
DOHMH’s authority to promulgate these rules is found in section 1043 of the New York City Charter and sections 17-503, 17-504, 17-505, 17-506(a), 17-513, 17-513.3 and 17-513.4 of the New York City Administrative Code.