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Lawmaker Takes Aim At City’s Hookah Bars

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — More and more hookah bars seem to be popping up across the city and one Brooklyn lawmaker is looking to put a stop to it.

The popularity of the hookah bar is undeniable. For example, there are about a dozen within walking distance of Thompkins Square Park.

LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reports

City Councilman Vincent Gentile’s ban would prevent new indoor establishments from opening in 2012. Gentile hopes to increase inspections of existing hookah bars and require them to register with the Health Department.

RELATED GUIDE: Best Hookah Bars In NYC

Gentile said the herbal smoke from hookahs can be just as dangerous as tobacco.

At Sahara East on Second Avenue, one man said it’s silly to include hookah bars under the city’s no smoking policy.

“Banning hookah bars, that’s really getting out of hand,” he said. “That’s like saying you can’t eat in a restaurant.”

Some New Yorkers feel hookah bars should be treated the same as cigar bars.

“This is specifically made for a hookah bar and I don’t see anything wrong with a hookah bar doing its thing,” another  man said.


One Comment

  1. jgogek says:

    Hookahs are dangerous, not just for people who smoke them but for anybody around. An hour long hookah session can produce the smoke of 100 cigarettes. People say it’s about the cultural experience. Baloney! It’s about hooking young people on tobacco. Check out at

  2. Kathy says:

    Why not just bring back slavery too? We’re only one step away…

    For the government…by the government…might as well move to Europe and at least get health insurance.

  3. mark says:

    Let me get this straight. We can have cigar bars and hookah bars but we can’t have cigarette bars. Seems to me that we are catering to the rich and the herbal but we can’t tolerate those loathesome Marlboro people. This city is messed up.

  4. Craig says:

    Dear Government,
    Please leave me alone.

  5. Steve says:

    Gentile, another dictator in the making!

  6. dave says:

    please stop the hookah bars,its not good for the Health ,please

    DAVE from beyrouth _ Lebanon.

Comments are closed.

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