The Health Department supports the enforcement of laws enacted to protect the health of city residents from the harmful effects of smoking and secondhand smoke. Our goal is to improve compliance and strengthen smoke-free air laws, reduce the access of minors to tobacco, and restrict the availability of discounted or untaxed tobacco products. We provide technical assistance to organizations, vendors and worksites implementing these laws, educational materials on responsibilities and rights under these laws, and trainings and presentations to various groups regarding these laws. The following laws are addressed in greater detail.
Smoke Free Air Act (SFAA)
This act protects the health of New York City workers against the harmful effects of secondhand smoke by banning smoking and the use of electronic cigarettes in virtually all workplaces; close to hospital entrances; and in City parks, beaches and pedestrian plazas.
- Information for the Public
- Information for Business Owners and Employers
NYS Clean Indoor Air Act (Public Health Law Article 13-F)
This state law was enacted 3 months after New York City's SFAA and contains similar restrictions.
The City Tobacco Product Regulation Act (TPRA) and State Adolescent Tobacco Use Prevention Act (ATUPA)
These City and State laws set forth numerous restrictions related to the retail sale of tobacco products, including banning the sale of tobacco products to persons under the age of 21 and requiring tobacco retailers to keep tobacco products behind the counter or in locked containers.
- What Retailers Need to Know
- City law restricts the sale of flavored tobacco products
- The TPRA bans the sale any tobacco products with a characterizing flavor, including, but not limited to, the tastes or aromas of any fruit, chocolate, vanilla, honey, candy, cocoa, dessert, alcoholic beverage, herb, or spice,
- The law does not apply to tobacco flavor, menthol, mint or wintergreen.
- A select number of tobacco bars that have been registered with the Department of Health since 2002 are exempt.
- Flavored cigarettes are prohibited separately under federal law.
- Implementing Rules (PDF)
- Tobacco 21
- City law Regulates Prices and Packaging for Tobacco Products
- The minimum sales price for a pack of cigarettes is $10.50.
- The minimum sales price for a pack of little cigars is $10.50.
- Retailers are prohibited from redeeming a coupon or other discount for cigarettes or tobacco products.
- A cigar that costs less than $3 individually must be sold in a pack of 4 or more cigars.
- Tobacco Sales Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
Other languages: [En Español] [中文] [정의] [عربي]
- Sensible Tobacco Enforcement Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
Other languages: [En Español] [中文] [정의] [عربي]
- Cigar Sales Frequently Asked Questions (PDF)
Other languages: [En Español] [中文] [정의] [عربي
- Cigarette Tax Evasion is Illegal
- City law imposes high fines and penalties for cigarette retailers who sell cigarettes without the proper New York City tax stamps.
- Cigarette retailers must post a sign stating that valid New York State and New York City tax stamps must be on all cigarette packages sold in New York City.
- NYC/NYS Tax Stamp Sign (PDF)
Internet Tobacco Sales
New York State bans the sale of cigarettes over the internet.
No Smoking and Electronic Cigarette Use Signs
"No Smoking and Electronic Cigarette Use" Signs are required for all indoor public spaces by NYC Smoke-Free Air Act Local Law #47 of 2002. They are available in white-on-blue. They can be downloaded for printing here:
Please note that these signs must:
- be printed in color with a color printer.
- be printed on durable material.
- be no smaller than 8 ¼ inches by 10 ½ inches.
- be oriented as they appear online.
- not be cut, re-ordered or re-designed.
Related Journal Articles
Chaloupka FJ, Cummings KM, Morley CP, Horan JK. 2002. Tax, price and cigarette smoking: evidence from the tobacco documents and implications for tobacco company marketing strategies. Tobacco Control. 11(Suppl i):i62-i72.
Coady MH, Chan CA, Sack R, Mbamalu IG, Kansagra SK. 2013. The Impact of Cigarette Excise Tax Increases on Purchasing Behaviors Among New York City Smokers. Am J Public Health. 2013;103:e54–e60.
Coady MH, Chan CA, Auer K, Farley, SM, Kilgore EA, Kansagra SK. 2012. Awareness and impact of New York City’s graphic point-of-sale tobacco health warning signs. Tobacco Control. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2011-05026
Davis KA, Coady MH, Mbamalu IG, Sacks R, Kilgore EA. 2013. Lessons Learned From the Implementation of a Time-Limited, Large-Scale Nicotine Replacement Therapy Giveaway Program in New York City. Health Promot Pract. DOI: 10.1177/1524839912471816
Farley SM, Coady MH, Mandel-Ricci J, Waddel EN, Chan CA, Kilgore EA, Kansagra SK. 2013. Public opinions on tax and retail-based tobacco control strategies. Tobacco Control. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2013-051272
Farley SM, Seoh H, Sacks R, Johns M. 2014. Teen Use of Flavored Tobacco Products in New York City. Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco. doi:10.1093/ntr/ntu126
Johns M, Farley SM, Rajulu DT, Kansagra SK, Juster HR. 2014. Smoke-free parks and beaches: an interrupted time-series study of behavioural impact in New York City. Tobacco Control. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2013-051335
Johns M, Coady MH, Chan CA, Farley SM, Kansagra SK. 2012. Evaluating New York City’s Smoke-Free Parks and Beaches Law: A Critical Multiplist Approach to Assessing Behavioral Impact. Am J Community Psychol. DOI 10.1007/s10464-012-9519-5
Kilgore EA, Mandel-Ricci J, Johns M, Coady MH, Perl SB, Goodman A, Kansagra SK. 2014. Making It Harder to Smoke and Easier to Quit: The Effect of 10 Years of Tobacco Control in New York City. AmJPublicHealth.2014;104:e5–e8. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.301940)
The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. March 2013. The State of a Smoke-Free New York City: A Ten Year Review.
Waddell EN, Farley SM, Mandel-Ricci J, Kansagra SK. 2014. Public support for smoke-free air strategies among smokers and nonsmokers, New York City, 2010 – 2012. Prev Chronic Dis 2014;11:130263. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5888/pcd11.130263.
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