Mayor Bloomberg To Sign Smoking Ban Bill

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is expected to sign a bill into law Tuesday banning smoking in nearly 1,700 parks and 14 miles of public beaches, boardwalks, marinas and pedestrian plazas.

The law would go into effect 90 days after the signing, on May 23. Violators could face a $100 fine.

“People who have made the decision not to smoke have civil liberties too and their health and their lives should not be negatively impacted because other people have decided to smoke,” Council Speaker Christine Quinn said. She added she was “very glad” that New York was becoming “a public health city.”

Is this law excessive or legitimate? Let us know below.

1010 WINS Reporter Kathleen Maloney spoke with unhappy smokers in Central Park

The City Council approved the measure on Feb. 2., but there was opposition, both within the Council itself and outside.

Council members who voted against the ban said they see it as an invasion of individual rights. “We have this crazy idea that we can change the way people behave. You can’t have salt, you can’t have sugar. Hop on a bicycle because it’s bad to drive your car. It’s ridiculous. What’s next?” said minority whip Eric Ulrich.

“We’re outside. We should have freedom to smoke,” City Hall Park smoker Harvey Forbes told CBS 2’s Magee Hickey.

There is no constitutional right to smoke in city parks and beaches so smokers have no legal recourse, but civil libertarians like Norman Siegal said the ban is just plain wrong.

“I think we’re moving towards a nanny state where government thinks they know what’s best for its citizens. You can inform, educate and persuade, but don’t take away our freedoms,” Siegal said.

A John Jay College public management professor said he finds it hard to believe secondhand smoke outdoors is harmful.

“What is the documentary evidence that secondhand smoke on the street is bad for you? It’s a tough sell. There’s a lot of air out here, not that much cigarette smoke,” Daniel Feldman said.

  • Paul


  • Todd

    Let me get this straight. If I want to live in “the greatest city on earth,”. I have to accept the fact that the mayor has the right to tell me what to eat, not to smoke in an open area, and if I’m attacked, I can’t defend myself, but need to rely that the NYPD will be my saving grace when and where I need them. At what point are New Yorkers going to realize the new laws telling them how to live by taking away their freedom is wrong? Politicians need a cause to fight, I get it, but a man I once adored has gotten drunk with power, and is turning a wonderful city into a police state that has no regard for the element of freedom that this country once held so dear. I do believe that If you commit a crime, especially with a gun, you should face the judge, but telling people they cant defend themselves is wrong. I know that detecting smoke within one’s vicinity is not suffering the effects of second hand smoke- that’s stupid. Finally, educating people about finding proper nutrition is far less insulting and oppressive than telling restaurants what they are allowed to serve. This little guy is brilliant, but he’s herding unwitting sheep into a dark alley that is getting to look awfully narrow.

  • herman ashford

    IF YOU CAN’T GIVE IT UP you weak & you stink……

  • herman ashford

    i want to say THANK YOU Bloomberg you doing the right thing

  • OLHA

    To people who don’t smoke. You probably very happy now because the new mayor’s law seems inoffensively. FOR YOU ! But not likely ! How about people who use to relax with a cigarette instead of take a bunch of pills ? It’s a cruel punishment. Think about people who suddenly faced such offencive action.
    Our mayor declared aggressive politic against AMERICANS different from him.
    NY city always were multicultural and LOYALTY, COURTESY and RESPECT to EVERYONE – that’s our LAW !

  • Oz

    Someone said this before if you are standing behind a NYC Bus or Taxi or even an SUV you are taking in more harmful chemicals then Two packs of cigarettes. Yes for all non-smokers this new law is great but what happens when they ban your favorite guilty pleasure? (Exp.) There will be no more eating in City Parks. Will you still have the same acclaim for our Mayor?

    • Roni P

      Yes, what about all the other pollution in the city?? Why doesn’t he just have everyone walking around with masks on or be fined !!!! It’s outrageious. this is supposed to be a free country, NYC is turning into a communistic society (even in those countries you can smoke & not worry about it). Buses, cars, trucks all the fumes – is that any better???…..I think he’s doing this for just for his own good & not for the people, he just doesn’t relate to the common people, how can u when yr worth $50 billion or whatever his net worth is….get rid of him!!!…..smokers also have rights & we abided by all other laws ie no smioking in restaurants, bars etc….Time to move out of the city & head to a less expensive, more work with the people kinda state…..I’M ABSOLUTELY NOT FOR THIS LAW!!!!

  • tai arnott

    Let me get this straight: Mini-Mayer Bloomberg wants to parent us even though we’re over 21?.. Hokay, why not alcohol, drugs, etc. that we ingest? Worse problems!.. If it weren’t for BIGGER taxes, I’m sure it’d be fast food next. Heck, Mr. Mayer, it should be! Obesity is the WORST physical problem–much because people QUIT smoking and EAT! .. Our politicians are the DUMBEST CLUCKS on the planet. For ex., SUV’S blow out 2 packs of cigarettes when ignition is turned over. IT’S CALLED THE BIG LACK GORILLA IN THE ROOM wh/ no one will touch. ..Ever thought this country would get like this???
    will touch….Dumb clucks w/ no logical priorities–> POLITICIANS.

  • Olha

    It’s outrageous that our mayor became our family doctor or nanny Mike and ban to us smoking OUTSIDE. I live in free country (I believe) and can do what I want and where I like. ( I’m not so stupid,as our mayor thinks, to smoke with kids around me or even people who not smoke). As far as our Governement does not restrict sigarettes traiding – smoking sigarettes is not illegal action. It is not a criminal, just a bad behavior. I want to decide myself to smoke or not to smoke. I pay crazy money for it. So this mayor “law” is ridiculous and what is more, It is a severe restriction of our civil rights. Mister mayor , you step on our freedom ( I use to go for a walk to nearest park for exemple, than sit on the bench and read my favorite magasine while I smoke my sigarette. So now I am a violator? Thank you, mister Bloomberg! You will not get my voice for you animore.( so I think from over 1 million NY city smokers ).

  • Dave K

    Walking behind a smoker on the street is something I shouldn’t be subjected to. On NYC streets, it’s difficult to maneuver your way around them. If they want to smoke, blow the smoke straight up as you walk. It probably won’t bother me much then.

  • JR

    To all of you who think this is a good thing because you do not smoke, if they can take this away from smokers, they can take stuff away from you too. This has nothing to do with smoking. it has everything to do with the government meddling in business that is not theirs!

    • JR

      And I do not smoke either!


    If you do not want to be near smoke outside you are FREE to walk away. If you do smoke your LIBERTY to do so should not be prohibited. This is just a ridiculous law that chisels away at person FREEDOM. I do not smoke.

  • marx engels

    hiller hated smoking too, and he was a little half-pint dictator just like this one

    • sick ofitall

      you are correct, but even Hitler never banned smoking :)

  • Lieutenantdan

    Just another tactic by our politicians to keep us occupied with laws such as this so that our focus is taken away from tour politicians and the professions that are related to our government.

  • Mr. Armenia

    This is a civil rights violation

    • Michael H.

      Ah, the beloved 28th Amendment, the right to choke others with your second hand smoke.

      • Thomas Jefferson

        Outside? Hardly you fascist.

  • pat

    What doe DER BLOOMBERG have in store next for NAZI NEW YORK.

    We have a Mayor who is making one law after another at the behest of the HEALTHCARE Industry.

    We have schools chancelor suggesting “forced sterilization”.

    Our rights are being systematically stripped away by Der Bloomberg and is band of corrupt croonies.

    We are being taxed into extinction by Der Bllomberg.

    This is history repeating itself all over again. This is Nazi Germany 1933.

  • smokersodysseycom

    Go bloomberg go! Let us be a smoke free city!

  • drade

    Bloomberg is a dictator ……..get a life sir Bloimberg… leave us alone with taking life from us people . we enjoyed going to park and sit a relax with our cigarette. they ban us from smoking in Bars and restraunt .. now the park.. like i said before .. get a life

  • smokersodysseycom

    If not for anything else I’m rooting for ya Mayor Mike- keep it up. Let this be a smoke
    free city. Y’all check out:

  • JFK

    This is the beginning of a larger trend. To read more see: “Health Official to Military Ban Smoking”

    You can find it on Lockergnome(dot)com

  • Anonymous

    Second hand smoke kills. I do not want to die just so you can enjoy a smoke in public spaces. You’re welcome to kill yourself in the comforts of your own home.

    • George Washington

      Second hand smoke can damage others, over a prolonged period of time, INSIDE. I had no idea NYC was full of so many fascists!

    • Roni P

      Oh please….you walk outside & there’s nothing but pollution…you eat certain foods, drink alchohol…that can kill u too….GET A LIFE!!!!….people stop smoking and they turn to eating…obsesity kills, I know someone that’s going thru it now…..SMOKERS HAVE RIGHTS!!!! you don’t have to be near a smoker….wear a mask!!!!

    • John Tuttle


  • priveleged soul

    Nobody believes in what the bible says. This is one of our rights being stripped away buy power and money. This is only the beginning. So dont be scared or mad, just read revelations, it will tell you whats coming next.

  • badman

    think also about the filters, which get tossed away. if a million smokers in NYC each toss two butts on the ground once a day (all very conservative estimates), that’s 730,000,000 butts a year in NYC that have to find a place to go. the real number is probably upwards of a billion.

    no big deal, smokers? then let’s bale them up and store them in your house.

  • Peter

    this is bull #hit I pay my five dollars in taxes for cigarettes.

  • William

    Big Brother getting bigger every day and most people don’t see it, or just don’t care. Banning smoking outside? We are slowly becoming what our forefathers fought against. However, the ‘powers that be’ are doing it at such a slow pace it is almost unnoticeable. That, and the creation of 10000 television channels created to dumb-down America and distract people from the important issues, is part of their tactic. BTW: I don’t smoke!

    • badman

      the 10000 tv channels is working… on you

  • JBZ

    Isn’t that what Bloomberg does best, dictate his own personal agenda and infringe on human rights? He is the wosrt mayor the city has ever seen.

  • Fred

    It’s too expensive to smoke anyway.

  • Lisa

    I think it is great. I don’t want to breathe your disgusting cigarette or cigar smoke while I am on the beach or in the park.

    • Frances


      I totally understand this. I came from California where similar laws apply and I was shocked and frustrated to not be able to enjoy my first day in Central Park this summer without inhaling a cloud of second hand smoke- I moved from bench to bench and lawn to lawn and could not find clean air to enjoy the day!

      • badman

        third that. the smelly minority is being forced further into the margins of society where it belongs

      • Dee

        Right and when they take away something you enjoy we shall see how you feel. Liberals at their best got to love it hmmm

      • Michael H.

        Dee, the things I enjoy don’t make others inhale smoke.

  • Zee

    What’s next? What’s next is that everyone is required to do community service. Since all funding is being cut to organizations that serve communities people are gonna have to get it together and start taking care where previously our tax dollars went. Sorry but I fundamentally believe that humans don’t want to see other humans suffer. But maybe those of you who are outraged about the smoking ban can’t see past your own selves. We know smoking kills. We know this. We’ve known this. Wake up people!

  • Craig

    OK….so cars, trucks and buses don’t smoke? This is like comparing a lite match to a forest fire!!! You really think that this ban is going to effect the Public Health??? REALLY!!!….Wow…’s called SMOG!!! and it isn’t from cigarettes….I can’t believe how STUPID this is!

  • Dee

    This country is slowly creeping towards a socialist state keeping voting these liberal clowns into office

  • RichireT

    Smoking in the parks it self doesn’t bother me that much. It’s that over 99% of smokers are slobs. I shouldn’t have to deal with half a dozen, or more cigarette buts that were just thrown on the ground while they were sitting on the bench.


    so this is what the boychick major is so worried about..why not while your ad it,bad fat bloated obese people from the beaches,..especially women..god the sight of these creatures can make you go blind..

    • mari n

      @Dr Ruth Says….

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