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Government Affairs Albany Update

June 9, 2000


The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority has established an advisory committee to work on standards for implementation of the state's new "green building" tax credits. Under this new legislation (see A.9292-A) the Department of Environmental Conservation in consultation with NYSERDA, is charged with adopting new standards for overall energy use by buildings; energy use by appliances and HVAC systems; the recycled content and toxicity of building materials; and other building-related factors. These standards are only for the purpose of determining eligibility for green building tax credits. The initial meeting of NYSERDA's advisory committee is Thursday, June 15. Energy efficiency standards are supposed to be in place by November 15, and all other standards are to be in place by May 15, 2001.


MINIMUM WAGE BILL PASSES THE STATE ASSEMBLY Following up on last week's promise by Assembly Speaker Silver to pass their minimum wage bill, the Assembly passed the bill on Wednesday, June 7th. It calls for a new state minimum wage or $6.75/hr effective January 1, 2001 and a linkage to the future changes in the state's average weekly wage. This would provide for an automatic increase each time the state's average weekly wage rises. For the list of bill sponsors and the voting record, click here: The current state minimum wage is $5.15/hr. and matches the federal minimum wage. It was less than three months ago ( April 1st) that the state's minimum wage rose from $4.25/hr. to the present $5.15/hr. The Senate still has not taken up the bill but they are under heavy pressure to do so next week, the last week of this year's legislative session. Please contact your state Senator and Senator Bruno's office to express your opposition to this bill. The Business Council's opposition memo is attached for your use.