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Government Affairs Albany Update

June 8, 2001

Assemblyman Levy to address GAC

Freshman legislator, Assemblyman Steve Levy of Suffolk County, will be our guest speaker at the June 12 meeting of the Government Affairs Council. The Business Council has also invited Assemblyman Paul Tonko to address the committee about the Assembly's recently announced Energy Plan.

At the meeting we will also provide highlights for other potential end-of-session issues. The meeting will begin promptly at 10:00 a.m., and will be held at The Business Council's Schuler Building.

DOT Divisible Load Permits for Trucks

On Tuesday, June 4th, The Business Council's Transportation Committee discussed the issue of divisible load permits for trucks. Currently, New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law limits permits for certain truck weight classes to a statewide total of 17,000. These include the 6 axle classes of both 107,000 lbs. (upstate) and 120,000 lbs. (New York City). Recently, the Department of Transportation has exhausted this total and has been forced to place applicants on a waiting list. This situation has impacted not only the trucking and transportation industry but also truck sales.

There is an effort underway to secure an additional 5,000 permits thus increasing the aggregate number to 22,000 overall. A number of provisions have been included in the proposal to increase the number of permits. At the June 4th Business Council Transportation meeting, the following proposals by the Department of Transportation were discussed by the committee in relation to divisible load permits;

Those interested in this issue, and the above mentioned proposals, are encouraged to contact The Business Council. Since the issue of additional permits requires legislative approval, we are encouraging members to contact us as soon as possible due to the June 20th scheduled session recess.

$6.75/hr. minimum wage rearing its head

This week, there were two actions in the state Senate involving minimum wage.

While both of these bills show a "no same as" status, they both call for the same wage increase and automatic escalator.

Since these bills are almost "same as," we continue to watch them closely as we move toward the end of the session.