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  1. Hey :-)
    The law will take effect in four months.

    (Bloomberg) -- The New York City Council approved adding electronic cigarettes to a ban on smoking in offices, restaurants, bars and parks, a move that may be followed by other U.S. cities.


    The measure, backed by Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Health Commissioner Thomas Farley, passed 43 to 8 yesterday.

    E-cigarettes, battery-operated tubes that simulate the effect of smoking by producing nicotine vapor, may be a gateway to smoking regular cigarettes and make quitting harder, Ms. Quinn said. The law would take effect in four months, said Jamie McShane, a spokesman for the speaker.

    Proponents say e-cigarettes don’t produce the toxic and carcinogenic byproducts found in second-hand smoke. Users, who call the practice “vaping,” turn to e-cigarettes to wean themselves off regular ones and shouldn’t be stigmatized, according to a pro-industry website funded by NJOY Inc. a Scottsdale, Arizona-based e-cigarette maker.

    “The council has worked for well over a decade to curb smoking in New York City and I really believe it’s one of our greatest accomplishments,” Ms. Quinn said before the vote. “E- cigarettes threaten, in my opinion, to undermine enforcement of the Smoke-Free Air Act.”

    Since Mayor Michael Bloomberg took office in 2002, the city has raised tobacco taxes and banned smoking in public places, a move copied by municipalities across the U.S. In a council hearing this month, Mr. Farley said failing to ban e-cigarettes would jeopardize progress.

    Life expectancy

    Mr. Bloomberg, who has pushed public-health programs, both as mayor and as a private philanthropist, says the smoking rate of adult New Yorkers has fallen by more than a quarter during his 12-year term, while teen smoking has been cut in half. The change has contributed to city residents’ life expectancy rising to a record of almost 81 years for babies born in 2010.

    The mayor has also required restaurant chains to post the calorie content of menu items and sought to limit sales of large-sized sugary drinks. Critics say Mr. Bloomberg has tried to impose a “nanny-state,” with government policies that interfere with personal choice.

    Tobacco industry analysts are watching e-cigarette regulation in New York and potential bans in Chicago and Los Angeles because of the possibility that other cities will follow suit, said Ken Shea, a senior analyst with Bloomberg Industries in Skillman, New Jersey. Such bans may curb e-cigarette sales, estimated next year at $3 billion annually, he said.

    Following suit

    “Look at all the other policies that Mayor Bloomberg has put in that have been copied by others,” said Mr. Shea. “It’s reasonable to think it could happen with e-cigs as well.”

    The mayor is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg News parent Bloomberg LP.

    Most major tobacco companies, including Altria Group Inc. and Reynolds American Inc., are pursuing the e-cigarette market, Mr. Shea said.

    In October, Murray Kessler, chief executive of Lorillard Inc., which acquired Blu Ecigs for $135 million last year, said vaping is exacerbating the decline of traditional cigarettes, reducing volume by about 1%. U.S. sales of cigarettes totaled $89 billion in 2012, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

    A Lorillard executive said before the vote that the company was disappointed with the decision.

    “Making less harmful products widely available to smokers should be a top priority,” said Robert Bannon, the company’s director of investor relations, in an e-mailed statement. “However, the NYC e-cigarette ban will only discourage smokers of combustible cigarettes who want to switch to an alternative product.”

    Age law

    The council’s vote comes two months after it raised the legal age to buy tobacco products and electronic cigarettes to 21 years old from 18. New York joins states such as New Jersey and Utah that ban the use of e-cigarettes where smoking is prohibited.

    The percentage of high-school students who reported using an e-cigarette rose to 10% in 2012 from 4.7% a year earlier, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Youth Tobacco Survey released in September. The study also found that about three-quarters of students who used e-cigarettes within the past 30 days also smoked conventional ones in the same period.

    Last year, 1.8 million middle- and high-school students had tried e-cigarettes, a trend that CDC Director Tom Frieden, a former New York City health commissioner, called “deeply troubling.”

    The Food and Drug Administration is considering regulating the products.


    Bloomsberg News
    December 20, 2013
    http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20131219/NEWS/131219834

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  1. Hey :-)
    NYC E-cig legislation, plus Utah, North Dakota and New Jersey

    (Reuters) - The New York City Council voted to add electronic cigarettes to the city's strict smoking ban on Thursday, in what could be the latest of many anti-tobacco measures put in place by outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

    [IMGL=''white'']https://www.drugs-forum.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=36262&stc=1&d=1387687302[/IMGL]Bloomberg's detractors have derided him for trying to impose a "nanny state" in America's largest city, pointing to his bans on smoking, trans fats and the attempt to limit the sale of large sugary drinks. Public health advocates have applauded those same efforts.

    Only weeks after New York became the first major city to raise the legal age for buying tobacco to 21, the City Council voted 43-8 to add electronic cigarettes to the city's Smoke-Free Air Act.

    If the mayor signs the bill, which he is expected to do, smoking e-cigarettes - or "vaping" - would be prohibited at public and private venues such as beaches, parks, restaurants and office buildings after 120 days.

    City Council speaker, Christine Quinn, who sponsored the bill, said at a press conference on Thursday that the public use of e-cigarettes threatens to undermine enforcement of anti-smoking laws because their appearance is similar to traditional cigarettes and could "re-normalize smoking in public places."

    E-cigarettes are slim, reusable metal tubes that contain nicotine-laced liquid in a variety of exotic flavors such as bubble gum and bacon. As a "smoker" puffs on the device, the nicotine is heated and releases a vapor that, unlike cigarette smoke, contains no tar, which is known to cause cancer and other diseases.

    Critics of the law contend that such a ban would do more harm than good.

    Richard Carmona, a former U.S. Surgeon General and a current board member at NJOY, one of America's largest electronic cigarette manufacturers, sent a letter to the council recently to urge rejection of the bill.

    "I'm extremely concerned that a well-intentioned but scientifically unsupported effort like the current proposal to include electronic cigarettes in New York's current smoking ban, could constitute a giant step backward in the effort to defeat tobacco smoking," Carmona wrote.

    The debate over risks versus benefits of e-cigarettes is far from settled, but a study published recently in the British medical journal, The Lancet, said they are as effective as nicotine patches for smokers trying to kick the habit.

    Three states - Utah, North Dakota and New Jersey - have already passed legislation banning e-cigarettes wherever smoking is prohibited.


    Reuters
    Reporter; Curtis Skinner
    Editor; Edith Honan & Gunna Dickson
    Photograph; Mike Segar
    Thursday 19 December 2013
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/12/20/us-usa-ecigarettes-newyork-idUSBRE9BI0JM20131220
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