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Legislative Memo

T 518.465.7517

BILL:

A.3175-A (Nolan) / S.3905 (Robach)

Support

SUBJECT:

Workers' Compensation Coverage

 

DATE:

June 9, 2003

 

According to the justification section of the sponsors memo a western New York employer fired employees when he learned that he would have to obtain workers' compensation coverage for them and hired out of state workers for whom coverage was waived. This is inaccurate and must be addressed because it is the premise on which the bill has been drafted.

According to the Workers' Compensation Board, this was not a western New York employer at all. It was in fact, an employer from the state of Ohio which had secured a workers' compensation policy covering out of state employees. When the Board realized that there were New York workers involved on the job, in addition to the out of state workers for whom coverage had already been secured, they contacted the Ohio employer. The Workers' Compensation Board informed the Ohio employer that they needed to purchase a New York policy to cover the New York workers.

The Workers' Compensation Board stated that the employer did not fire New York employees, but rather purchased a policy immediately to cover the New York workers.

New York employers are required by law to provide workers' compensation coverage to their employees. Current Workers' Compensation Law provides for penalties under section 52 if an employer does not have coverage. Penalties are already in place for employers who are out of compliance with the law.

We are also believe that the provision that would disallow out of state waivers will hurt New York businesses in the long run. If New York will not provide out of state waivers, those states may in turn disallow New York businesses from receiving waivers.

The Business Council, a broad-based, statewide membership organization of over 3,500 companies, chambers of commerce and trade associations has reviewed the aforementioned legislation and strongly opposes its enactment.