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New York City To Punish Cold Air

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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Good news for long-time New York City social observer David Patrick Columbia! The bane of his existence, schmancy stores that flood the streets with air conditioning, may become illegal in New York. (It happens every summer that the New York City Council becomes indistinguishable from that of Berkeley's.)

Two years ago, Columbia talked about how "Every day on the way to lunch at Michael's he passes Abercrombie & Fitch, with its open doors blasting freezing air onto the street, and all the girls running in with their credit cards to buy up the gay scene." He referred to them as "shop-o-terrorists." Come tomorrow, the City may impose fines on retailers that air-condition with their doors open: "Stores would be fined $200 for a second offense and $400 for subsequent violations within an 18-month period." Now you can get a ticket in New York for having graffiti on your building, or for mixing recycling and regular trash. Oh the over-regulated life! Still there's a downside to this new scheme: However will the growing number of homeless people cool off?

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