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NYC considers adding e-cigarettes to smoking ban

NEW YORK (AP) -- A New York City Council committee is going to consider proposed legislation that would include electronic cigarettes in the city's ban on smoking in bars, restaurants and other indoor public spaces.

The council's Health Committee has scheduled a public hearing on the issue for Dec. 4. Electronic cigarettes are battery-powered, and allow users to inhale vaporized liquid nicotine instead of tobacco smoke.

The legislation is sponsored by Speaker Christine Quinn and Councilmember James Gennaro. They say allowing e-cigarettes in places where tobacco cigarettes are banned threatens "effective enforcement" of the smoking ban and sends the wrong message to children that smoking is safe.

Thomas Kiklas of the Tobacco Vapor Electronic Cigarette Association, an industry group, says the organization is ok with regulations that treat e-cigarettes the same as tobacco cigarettes.
   AP-WF-11-27-13 1853GMT
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