Smoking Disclosure: 5 Things to Know about NYC’s New Law

LandlordsNY Member

LandlordsNY Member

By: NYC Smoke-Free, Public Health Solutions

On August 28, 2017, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed Local Law 147—a new bill that requires building owners to create a smoking policy and disclose it to current and prospective residents. Smoking disclosure is designed to help New York City residents make better choices on where they live, and ultimately reduce the number of smokers across the city.

Here are 5 things to know about this new bill:

  1. All residential buildings must create a smoking policy. This covers residential buildings with three or more units, including rentals, condominiums, and cooperatives.
  2. Smoking policies must be in place by August 28, 2018. The new bill was enacted on August 28, 2017 and requires building owners and managers to be in compliance within 365 days.
  3. All current and prospective residents must be informed of the policy. The policy must be distributed to tenants and apartment owners annually, and incorporated into leases and purchase agreements. It must also be posted in public areas within the building.
  4. Failure to comply with this law may result in fines. Any owner who fails to disclose the building’s smoking policy as required may face a $100 civil penalty.
  5. Smoking disclosure benefits both tenants and landlords. Knowing a building’s smoking policy enables residents to make more informed choices about where they live (especially important for families with young children and older adults). In turn, this benefits landlords by reducing complaints and disputes regarding secondhand smoke.

Tobacco use remains the #1 cause of preventable death in the US, with 12,000 city residents dying each year from a smoking-related illness. NYC Smoke-Free, a program of Public Health Solutions, works to protect the health of New Yorkers through tobacco control policy, advocacy and education.

  • LandlordsNY Member

    What constitutes a "policy?" Meaning, if you are NOT a non-smoking building do you simply state that smoking is permitted in certain or all areas? Or is this a push to ban smoking in all buildings?

  • LandlordsNY Member

    I have reached out to the city regarding your question. I will let you know once I receive a response.

    • LandlordsNY Member

      Here was our exchange:

      If enacting a policy that doesn’t ban smoking, does the language have to include the specified areas where smoking is permitted or not permitted? Or, can it say something along the lines of: “Smoking is permitted in all outdoor spaces unless there is a sign designating said space as a non-smoking area. Smoking is not permitted in any of the building's indoor common areas."

      Yes. If you implement a policy for your building/property that does allow smoking, you must disclose the specific areas where smoking is prohibited as well as the specific areas where smoking is allowed.

      ·If smoking is allowed in individual apartments, can it still be deemed a nuisance if it bothers a neighbor?

      “Absolutely. Secondhand smoke is more than a nuisance. It is a serious health hazard, with serious consequences for non-smokers. Health and engineering experts agree that the only way to eliminate the health risks associated with indoor exposure to secondhand smoke is to prohibit all smoking activity. Additionally, tenants may have the right to take legal action against landlords or smoking tenants if smoke is drifting into their apartment. Possible legal claims include claims for negligence, trespass, breach of the covenant of quiet enjoyment, nuisance, and violation of the warranty of habitability. For more information visit http://nycsmokefree.org/<wbr>issues/housing-inequality</wbr> and download our Smoke-Free Housing Guides.”

    • LandlordsNY Member

      Does Anyone want to share their No Smoking policy for their building?

  • Hi, I would say the sample below would be sufficient. BioShine Inc. can provide signs for anyone in need. Please contact jason@bio-shine.com. I have the sample in pdf but do not see a way to attach it here. i'm going to insert it as an image.

    Reply
    This post was made by a vendor
    • LandlordsNY Member

      For the NYC Smokers Policy couldn't a violation of this policy be considered a material breach?

      Could I put the following in the NYC non-smoking policy?

      Material Breach. A material breach of this NYC NON-SMOKING Policy shall be a material breach of the Lease and grounds for immediate termination of the Lease by the Owner. Resident shall be responsible for all damages and costs associated with termination of Lease due to material breach.

      I have to assume this is not enforceable with the RS but maybe could be used with the decontrolled?

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