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State legislation advances ahead of next week’s session

Several bills moved out of the Insurance and Labor committees this week, and a new bill was introduced.

A.10350-A—introduced by Assemblyman Jeffrion L. Aubry, D-35, would require employers to notify employees if they come into contact with other employees who have been infected with a virus that is causing a public health emergency, and would prohibit employers from disclosing the name of the diagnosed employee. The bill was reported out of the Assembly Labor Committee on Wednesday and referred to the Assembly Codes Committee, which meets tomorrow. Aubry said in his sponsor’s memo that, “Mandating employee notification of possible exposure to a related public health emergency can and will decrease potential illness and death among New Yorkers.”

A.10358A, introduced by Assemblyman Robert Carroll, D-44, was reported out of the Assembly Labor Committee on Wednesday and referred to the Assembly Rules Committee. The bill would require employers to provide a written notice informing employees of their right to file for unemployment benefits if they have not been scheduled or offered work hours in the past seven days, or offered work for the next seven day period. This bill would codify existing Department of Labor regulations and directives to ensure that all employees are aware of their right to file for unemployment when they have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, and are provided necessary information to help them file.

A.5070, introduced by Assemblyman William A. Barclay, R-120, relates to flood insurance notice in communities bordering Lake Ontario.  The bill would require the Department of Financial Services to publish an annual notice with the department’s contact information and a statement about flood insurance and how it relates to standard homeowner’s insurance policies in local newspapers that serve the communities bordering Lake Ontario. The bill was reported out of the Insurance Committee on Tuesday and referred to the Assembly Rules Committee. According to Barclay’s sponsors memo, “Lake Ontario water levels are rising to the highest levels in nearly 20 years and, as a result, the communities along the southern and eastern shore are bracing for flooding … the bill [also would] inform residents about the lack of coverage for flood damage in standard homeowner’s insurance policies in New York and how insurance for flood damage [generally is] available under a separate policy issued through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).”

A.7422B, introduced by Assembly Robert J. Rodriguez, D-68, would enact the peer-to-peer car sharing program act, which would provide guidelines for establishing such programs and outlines how they shall be insured. The bill would authorize car sharing companies to purchase group insurance for the program—which cars shall be used, how drivers shall work under such programs and how liability should be determined under such programs in the case of an accident or damaged property. The bill also would impose transaction taxes on peer-to-peer car sharing transactions, including taxes to fund mass transit and public transportation. The bill was voted out of the Assembly Insurance Committee on Tuesday and referred to the Assembly Codes Committee, which meets tomorrow.

A.10752, introduced last week, relates to personal protective equipment for employers. The bill would require employers to supply PPE to employees at no cost to those employees, and would require employers to carry a minimum of a month’s supply of surgical masks or respirators, and disposable latex or nitrile gloves, as determined by the Commissioner of Labor whom the bill directs to promulgate regulations necessary for the implementation of this act. Should the bill pass, it would go into effect Friday, January 1, 2021. You can check the status of this and any other bill in New York on our PIAdvocacy bill tracker.

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