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Purpose

 SENATE STANDING COMMITTEE ON HEALTH

NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING

 

SUBJECT:      Impact of New York State’s Clean Indoor Air Act (Public Health Law, Article 13-E) on improving public health.

PURPOSE:     To learn how the State’s regulation of smoking and tobacco products works to improve the health of all New Yorkers and any actions needed for continued benefits.  Are we doing enough?

September 23, 10:00 a.m.
Senate Hearing Room
250 Broadway, 19th Floor
New York City

Effective July 24, 2003, the amendments to New York State’s Clean Indoor Air Act (Chapter 13 of the Laws of 2003) prohibit smoking in virtually all workplaces, including restaurants and bars. The changes in the Act reflect the State's commitment to protecting New Yorkers from secondhand smoke.  After seven years, it is time to look at how the law has been implemented and enforced as well as how it has impacted the health of New Yorkers.

The American Lung Association estimates that over 392,000 Americans die annually from tobacco-caused disease, making it the leading cause of preventable death.  Another 50,000 people die from exposure to secondhand smoke.  According to the Department of Health, smoking kills 25,500 people every year in New York State.  Secondhand smoke kills 2,500 New Yorkers every year.

Several bills before the Senate Standing Committee on Health seek to strengthen the protection of New Yorkers from secondhand smoke, as well as regulate the access to and type of tobacco products available in the State.  In addition, localities across the State have taken action to further protect New Yorkers from smoking and tobacco-related diseases through the enactment of more stringent smoking bans and rules regulating the sale of tobacco products.

The purpose of this hearing is to learn how the changes to the Clean Indoor Air Act enacted in 2003 along with local action to further regulate smoking and tobacco products have impacted the health of New Yorkers, how state and local government agencies are implementing and enforcing the Act, and what other actions may be taken to further the Act’s goals.

Anyone wishing to testify or attend the hearing must complete the hearing reply form below and return it as indicated no later than September 10, 2010.  Testimony is by invitation only.  Individuals who would like an invitation to testify should indicate so on the reply form below.  It is important that the form be fully completed and returned so that persons may be notified in the event of emergency postponement or cancellation.

The Committee will accommodate as many witnesses as possible.  The Committee also strongly encourages the submission of written testimony.  Any written testimony submitted will be considered by the Committee and will be made part of its record.  Written testimony, whether presented in person at the hearing or not, must be e-mailed (as a Word or PDF document) five days before the hearing to: Cecelia Pelkey, pelkey@senate.state.ny.us.

Witnesses are asked to keep oral testimony to no more than ten minutes in length.  In preparing the order of witnesses, the Committee will attempt to accommodate individual requests to

speak at particular times in view of special circumstances.  This request should be made on the attached reply form or communicated to the Committee staff as soon as possible.  If you are testifying, please submit one electronic copy of any written statement five days prior to the hearing and twenty hard copies at the hearing registration table.

In accordance with State and Federal law, the Senate seeks to make its facilities and services available to all individuals with disabilities.  Reasonable accomodations will be provided for individuals with disabilities, upon reasonable request, to afford such individuals access and admission to Senate facilities and activities.

Questions about this hearing may be directed to Cecelia Pelkey, Counsel to the Senate Health Committee at 518-455-2451 or pelkey@senate.state.ny.us.