This Week in Albany

Legislative Update

Priority Bill Update

CSEA’s priority bills continue to advance through the legislature. Support memos for these bills can be found by clicking on the bill number or by visiting our website.

  • S.5205 – Goundardes / A.7624 – Abbate: This bill would require the appointment of an independent hearing officer in Section 75 disciplinary actions involving dismissal from service brought against a public employee by an appointing authority. Reported out of the Senate Civil Service & Pensions Committee to the Senate Floor

  • S.5705 – Mayer / A.7538A – Benedetto: This bill would require school bus drivers and monitors to be included in district-wide and building-level school safety teams. Reported out of the Senate Education Committee to the Senate Floor

  • S.6094 – Kennedy: This bill would increase penalties for endangering a highway worker, promote workzone safety awareness, and create additional resources for work zone safety enforcement and enhancement. Reported out of the Senate Transportation Committee to the Finance Committee

  • S.5285A – Brooks / A.1093B – Paulin: This bill authorizes additional paid leave for local government employees who are combat veterans for health services relating to their military service. State employees received this benefit in 2019. Reported out of the Senate Veterans Committee to the Senate Floor

  • S.5162 – Stavisky: This bill would allow pharmacy technicians in a hospital setting to assist a licensed pharmacist in the preparation and dispensing of drugs. This bill will allow pharmacy technicians to continue to do work they have done for years after a Department of Education decision called this ability into question. Passed Senate

  • S.5445 – Skoufis / A.7476 – Magnarelli: This bill would expand the oversight authority of the Office of the State Comptroller to include private organizations controlled by local government entities. This would increase transparency and accountability for entities like local development corporations (LDCs) that local governments are increasingly using to finance their day-to-day operations. Passed Senate

  • S.5772 – Carlucci / A.7961 – Gunther: This bill would require a written report to the legislature one year prior to closing an OMH, OPWDD, or OCFS facility. Passed Senate

 

New York Health Act Testimony

This week, CSEA testified before the State Assembly and Senate Standing Committees on Health, in opposition to the state’s proposed New York Health Act.

The proposal would create a single-payer health care system in New York in an attempt to provide coverage to all New Yorkers. While CSEA supports universal health insurance and has actively lobbied in support of numerous federal and state laws and programs to increase access to health care services and insurance for millions of Americans, we cannot support this flawed bill for several reasons:

  • A lack of information on costs, which would be passed onto workers through an undefined payroll tax and could nearly double our state budget;
  • The proposal negates collectively-bargained health insurance provisions in favor of a one-size-fits-all approach; and
  • The proposal could negatively impact public retirees who continue to have employer-sponsored health coverage.

In our testimony, CSEA outlined several solutions the state could implement that would insure all New Yorkers without drastically altering our current health care delivery and financing system.

A copy of the entire testimony can be found on our website.


At a Glance

The legislature will be in session for four days next week. There are 11 scheduled days remaining in the 2019 state legislative session.