Bloomberg is not trying to end smoking, he says

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The Bloomberg administration has proposed that all apartment-building owners be required to state explicitly where smoking is and isn't allowed on their property, and then disclose that information to existing and future tenants.

Today, the mayor argued against the idea that it was a nanny-state law.

"We're not trying to ban anything, but I've always believed, as you know, that if you want to smoke, I think [you] should have a right to do so," he said.

"But it kills you," he added.

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This morning's Wall Street Journal reported that the Bloomberg administration "plans to propose legislation that would require residential buildings to adopt written policies on where smoking is permitted or prohibited and disclose those rules to prospective tenants and owners, a move that officials predict could increase the number of smoke-free apartment buildings in New York City."

During the question-and-answer portion of a Staten Island press conference today about building a new water siphon to Staten Island, reporters asked Bloomberg if he was seeking to ban smoking in apartments altogether.

The mayor, a former smoker who has banned smoking in parks, beaches and restaurants, said that's not his intention.

"If you really intellectually start thinking about it, we protect people from hurting themselves, if they're trying to jump off a bridge we restrain them," he said. "Should you really do it with smoking? We're not gonna do it with smoking."

"Our job is to inform people and then let them make decisions based on the risks that they want to take and the way they want to live their lives," he added. "And we shouldn’t be telling you how to do that."