de blasioNew York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has signed legislation aimed at preventing future outbreaks of Legionnaires’ Disease. This comes after a break-out of the illness in the Bronx that left 12 people dead and more than 100 hospitalized.

Like the state regulations announced yesterday, the new law requires cooling towers to be registered and tested regularly for bacteria that could lead to Legionnaires’ Disease.

If building owners do not comply with the registry and new regulations, they could face a fine of up to $10,000. If an inspection reveals that a cooling tower must be disinfected, building owners could be slapped with a $25,000 fine if they don’t follow through. Building owners have 30 days to register their cooling towers with the New York City Department of Health.

There is at least one difference between the state and city regulations. As we reported yesterday, testing is required about every three months regardless of location. Under the city’s law, those tests are only required during months when cooling towers are in use. The state regulations require testing year-round.

The bill was passed by the New York City Council last week and takes effect immediately, starting today. A release from the mayor’s office indicates that the legislation was crafted in collaboration with the City Council and the governor’s office.

“The recent Legionnaires’ outbreak has been an unprecedented challenge requiring an unprecedented response,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in the release. “But a powerful response is just one piece of the equation. New Yorkers need to be protected from the disease through aggressive preventive action, and this groundbreaking legislation, developed in partnership with the City Council, is exactly that.”