Proposed Legislation Would Ban Smoking in NYCHA Apartments

Queens Councilman Donovan Richards recently introduced legislation that would forbid New York City tenants living in city-subsidized apartments from smoking in their units. This type of law already applies in Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Albany.

The bill would apply to all 178,000 apartments in the New York City Housing Authority. The legislation does not yet specify penalties. And Richards said residents might get warnings, followed by fines for repeat offenses.

A 2015 study by the Department of Health found that NYC smoking rates have hit their lowest point since 2007. The most recent data shows that 13.9 percent of New Yorkers were smoking in 2014, down from 16.1 percent in 2013, or more than 1 million New Yorkers.