Drivers who smoke in the City of Schenectady are no longer allowed to do so when a child is present as a passenger. The City Council passed legislation for the ban on Tuesday night in a 5-1 vote.

The ban impacts smokers with passengers 16-years-old, or younger. Schenectady is the first city in New York to pass such a law. According to 'The Daily Gazette,'

Councilman John Polimeni, who sponsored the legislation, said it would protect children’s respiratory health and help reduce medical costs for those with respiratory diseases. “They can’t protect themselves, so we must do it,” he said. “This is an area where we can take a leadership role in the state and be proud of ourselves.”

The lone councilman that voted against the ban feels that the restriction would put an added burden on the city police. Punishment for this offense comes in the form of a monetary fine. That fine increases with the number of offenses. Rockland County in New York State passed a similar law for children under 18.

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