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Public housing units to enforce smoking ban

Smokers, listen up, if you’re living in federally funded public housing, you won’t be able to light up there anymore.

Just over 400 public housing units in Quincy will now be smoke-free.

A government ban on smoking in public housing back in 2016 will take effect.

At places like the Quincy Housing Authority on 540 Harrison, tenants must smoke at least 25 feet away from their unit.

Officials said the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the ban to save money and provide healthier environments. 

"It’s an issue of being able to try and fill apartments," Jerry Gille, Executive Director of the Quincy Housing Authority said. "The feds mandate that we are 98 percent the minimum and 98 percent occupied at all times. We expect to lose tenants over this and we expect that it will be more difficult to attract tenants in the future as a result of this. We may be wrong, but that’s what we expect."

According to the housing authority lease agreement, violators get a verbal warning on the first offense, but after the fourth offense, the housing authority can terminate the tenant’s lease, which Gille said could be a long legal process.

One thing to note however, this ban does not cover e-cigarettes.

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