New Bloomberg anti-smoking law pushes to hide cigarettes

Mayor Michael Bloomberg
Mayor Michael Bloomberg proposed the legislation in part to curb smoking among young adults. Credit: NYC Mayor’s Office

A new anti-smoking law proposed by the mayor would require vendors keep cigarettes in “concealed locations.”

Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s policy states that, unless in the process of restocking or a transaction, sellers must keep tobacco products in cabinets, drawers, under the counter or behind a curtain.

Stores would still be allowed to advertise or display product and price information.

The Sensible Tobacco Enforcement bill was motivated by studies that indicate that youth exposed to cigarette displays are more likely to start smoking and become addicted.

New York City would be the first in the nation to employ such a policy, but similar prohibitions implemented in Iceland in 2001 and Canada in 2005 have reportedly already been associated with “substantial declines” in youth smoking.

The bill is also intended to cut down on discounted and smuggled cigarettes. The city touted the proposal as something that “would help honest retailers compete.”

It would establish a minimum price at $10.50 per pack and applies to both cigarettes and little cigars.

It also would impose packing requirements on cheap cigars and cigarillos, mandating that they be sold in packages of at least four, and little cigars in packages of at least 20. Cigars that cost more than $3 are exempt.

The Department of FInance has the authority to close stores that violate the law.

Cigarettes are more expensive in New York City than anywhere else in the country due to federal, state and local taxes. An estimated $250 million to $600 million is lost annually in unpaid taxes from cigarette trafficking in the city.

Smoking in NYC by the numbers

  • In 2011, 28,000 NYC public high school students tried smoking for the first time
  • 19,000 NYC public high school students under the age of 18 smoked
  • Seeing tobacco product displays frequently makes youth 2.5 more likely to start smoking
  • A March 2013 Vital Signs report from the Health Department found that 80 percent of NYC tobacco retailers have the majority of the area behind the check counter devoted to tobacco displays
  • That stat jumps to 86 percent in “high-risk neighborhoods,” compared to 79 percent in other areas
  • 59 percent of New York City residents, including 41 percent of smokers, favor keeping tobacco products out of sight

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 22,…

The Percy Sutton Harlem 5K and NYC Family Health Walk-a-thon and Pakistan Day Parade and Fair will cause traffic delays and street closures in New York City this weekend. Plan…

International

U.N. nuclear inquiry on Iran seen making slow…

The U.N. nuclear watchdog appears to have made only limited progress so far in getting Iran to answer questions about its suspected atomic bomb research, diplomatic sources said on Friday,…

National

Violence-weary Missouri town sees second night of calm

By Nick Carey and Carey GillamFERGUSON Mo. (Reuters) - The violence-weary town of Ferguson, Missouri, saw a second straight evening of relative calm on Thursday…

National

Journalist James Foley's parents, after call with pope,…

The parents of James Foley, the American journalist killed by Islamic State militants in Iraq, on Friday called for prayer and support to free the remaining captives held by Islamic…

Television

Recap: 'The Knick,' Season 1, Episode 3, 'The…

The third episode of Steven Soderbergh's "The Knick" finds Dr. Thackery (Clive Owen) meeting an old flame and other characters embracing self-destruction.

Music

Webcast: Watch Polyphonic Spree live on Sunday Aug.…

Polyphonic Spree singer Tim DeLaughter sits with Metro Music Editor Pat Healy for a chat and then the big band performs live. It begins on Sunday at 9:30 pm

Movies

Matthew Weiner on directing 'Are You Here' and…

"Mad Men" creator Matthew Weiner discusses his movie "Are You Here," his history writing comedy and the tiny movie he directed in 1996 you can't see.

Movies

Michael Chiklis on his football past and 'When…

Michael Chiklis remembers playing football in high school and how that prepped him to play a coach in "When the Game Stands Tall."

NFL

Fantasy football draft guide: How to draft your…

Many are wondering if we’re entering a new age in fantasy football drafting — one where running backs take a backseat.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Giants storylines to watch

The Giants have plenty to work on as they reach the dress rehearsal preseason game Friday night against the rival Jets.

NFL

Jets vs. Giants: 3 Jets storylines to watch

Metro looks at three Jets storylines to watch as they play the Giants Friday.

NFL

Giants expected to work Corey Washington into first-team…

The day of reckoning for the Giants' fringe players will fall upon them Friday night against the Jets.

Sex

Big weddings may lead to long-term happiness

Dreaming of a big wedding? A new study indicates that the longer your guest list, the happier you’ll be in the long run. l A…

Sex

Online dating for every generation

Frank Jackson and his mother Maggie are like lots of modern families: They have dinner together regularly, keep each other updated on their lives —…

Wellbeing

Going green could be the key to getting…

If we could just pursue the things that would actually make us happy, we could help the environment too, according to a New York researcher.…

Tech

Siren: A new dating app that puts women…

Online dating can be brutal, especially for single women. Noting that many women hate wading through inappropriate messages and photos, two tech entrepreneurs decided to…