Learn How to Deal With Smoking, Dogs and Bedbugs in Your Building Big Apple CAI, CNYC to Hold Discussion on Feb. 20


Smoking, dogs, and bedbugs: either one or all of those issues can affect you as a co-op or condo owner. Many residents have experienced a cloud of cigarette smoke in the hallway, the loud bark of a noisy dog in the middle of the night, or even the disgusting sight of a parasitic insect appearing out of the blue. Bad enough on an individual level, these issues are a reflection of larger ones within a building, from quality-of-life concerns to conflicts between neighbors.

And that's why Big Apple CAI and the Council of New York Cooperatives & Condominiums (CNYC) are co-hosting an event on February 20, "Smoking, Dogs and Bed Bugs: What's a Co-op/Condo to Do?",  to address those issues. According to a press release, the event is part of the Big Apple CAI-CNYC Meetup series, and its purpose is to inform board members and property managers about the latest city guidelines, determine whether they're compliant, and assist them in formulating smoking policies for their properties that conform with the new local law.

Last August, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a bill that prohibits smoking in the common areas of residential buildings with fewer than 10 units (It is already illegal to smoke in residential buildings with 10 or more units). The law is scheduled to go into effect this August.  “This legislation addresses this imbalance, prohibiting smoking in common areas of all multiple dwelling units, regardless of size, thereby extending the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s power to enforce the ban in these buildings,” said Council Member James Vacca in a press release at the time of the bill's signing. 

The presenters at the CAI/CNYC event will also discuss recent legal cases involving smoking, dogs, and bedbugs, and how stakeholders can avoid possible liability. 

Among the presenters scheduled at the meetup include attorney Kenneth R. Jacobs of the New York City law firm Smith, Buss & Jacobs. An expert in condo and co-op law, Jacobs is a board member of the Big Apple chapter of CAI and a contributor to The Cooperator.

“With an August 2018 deadline approaching for instituting smoking polices, it is important for cooperatives and condominiums to consider their policies now,” said CAI in a statement.

Smoking, Dogs and Bed Bugs: What's a Co-op/Condo to Do?, co-sponsored by Big Apple CAI and CNYC, will be held on Tuesday February 20, 7:30 p.m., at the Brooklyn Historical Society, 128 Pierrepont Street, Brooklyn. Free to shareholders, board members and property managers. RSVP here

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  • When is something going to be done about the problem of PPP (Passive Pork Particulates) being forced down the throats of vegetarians and those with religious objections to the ingestion of pork in these buildings. We've now firmly established the principle of migration of unwanted particulates migrating from one apartment unit to another through the efforts aimed at smokers, now it just needs to be expanded to stop those who carelessly throw slabs of bacon onto a frying pan and pollute the lungs and body systems of the rest of a building's innocent residents! Note: No one is talking about banning people from EATING bacon! If a person wants to boil their bacon in a pot of water for consumption that should not be a problem: there are no particulates spread to other units, and the pork eaters can still have their bacon for breakfast. It's not JUST a matter of religious freedom either! There are studies out there on the carcinogenic effects of the fumes from fried foods that indicate they may be almost three times as dangerous as the secondary smoke from cigarettes. There is NO good reason why those trying to breathe clean air should have pig fat forced down their throats! - MJM, who actually likes both his cigarettes and fried bacon; but what's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.
  • Bedbugs are serious business, and so are barking dogs in an apartment situation, but "cloud[s] of smoke in the hallways"? Give me a break! This is just more of the nonsense surrounding secondhand smoke concocted to get people to stop smoking while paranoia is given a reason to exercise itself and smokers are deprived of a personal pleasure even in the privacy of their own apartments. Some may take this as benign, but some of us take it for what it really is: a bit of totalitarian evil to restrict our personal lives and coercive people into "proper" behavior by heath nannies and those who'll accept any excuse to stick their noses in other people's business. Coerce, coerce, don't we all just love to be coerced!
  • Harry O'Brien: the saddest part of it is the way so few people seem to care about anyone but themselves. I don't like barking dogs, but I'm not about to agitate for laws against dogs in apartments. Cat urine smells to high heaven and their litter causes toxoplasmosis, but I don't want to grab everyone's cats and dump them in the trash bin. But if the dog owners and cat owners let the heavy hand of government into homes to regulate smoking, the regulation of their pets may not be far behind. - MJM