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Islip Town Board eyes new restrictions on vape shops, lounges

Islip Town Hall is seen in an undated

Islip Town Hall is seen in an undated image. Credit: Erin Geismar

The Islip Town Board is set to hold a public hearing on May 24 to get feedback on a proposed amendment that would add vape shops and vape lounges to the “adult uses” category in the Town Code.

The two types of establishments “pose a serious risk to the health, safety and welfare of Town of Islip residents,” the resolution states.

The suggested code change describes vape lounges as “an establishment intended for the gathering of people for the purpose of using electronic cigarettes, vapor products or hookah.”

For vape shops, the resolution defines them as: “A retail outlet specializing in the sale and/or distribution of any electronic cigarette or vapor products, including but not limited to electronics; vape pens; dissolvable liquids; vaporizing liquids; oils or gels; mods; atomizers; vape tanks; coilheads; hookahs; hookah tobaccos.”

Businesses are placed in the “adult uses” category because “there are some uses which, due to their very nature, have serious objectionable characteristics...having deleterious effects on adjacent areas,” if they are concentrated in any one area, the Town Code reads.

“Special regulation of these uses is necessary to ensure that these adverse effects will not contribute to the blighting or downgrading of the surrounding neighborhoods or land uses,” as well as to restrict their accessibility to minors, according to the code.

Other types of shops in this category include strip clubs and peep show establishments, which are not allowed to be within a 500-foot-radius of any residential zone, school, church, park, playground or playing field, or within a half-mile radius of another such outfit.

A copy of the proposal is available at the town clerk’s office. The public hearing will be held at the Town Board meeting at 2 p.m. at Town Hall on Main Street in Islip.

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