For Immediate Release:
September 27, 2004
NYS Assembly Significant Legislation 2004

Last Updated On: November 10, 2004



Assisted Living Facilities This bill would establish a clear definition of assisted living, and require all assisted living facilities to be licensed by the state, as well as establish important protections to ensure consumers receive the care they need. (A.11820/S.7748; Chapter 2)

Elder Law This bill would establish a new chapter of the Consolidated Law entitled Elder Law. The legislation would focus a specific area of state law on the services and programs affecting the elderly, including tax exemptions, prescription drug coverage and housing. (A.9708/S.6047; Chapter 642)

Senior Income Exemption This bill would exempt 100 percent of a senior's Social Security income from the calculation used to determine an individual's eligibility for the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE) program. (A.8473; Passed Assembly / S.7638; Rules)

EPIC Benefits This bill would ensure that seniors who are living in a nursing home have access to their Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) program benefits. The legislation would protect seniors from being forced to buy prescription drugs on their own and without the benefits of EPIC, a program that can provide a savings of 75 percent to an individual's annual purchase of prescription medications. (A.10540; Passed Assembly)

STAR Extender This bill would allow local governments to provide seniors, who are granted the STAR exemption, a five day extension to pay real property taxes. (A.9519; Passed Assembly / S.1814; Rules)

Senior/Child Day Care Program The bill would provide a two year extension to the combined senior citizen service center/residential health care facility/child day care community grants program. Under the bill, the intergenerational day care program is extended to December 31, 2006. (A.10876; passed Assembly / S.6781; Chapter 308)

Senior Banking This bill would allow senior citizens, who may not have the financial assets to maintain a bank account, to cash their Social Security check at any bank in the state upon the presentation of sufficient identification. Under the bill, a Social Security check would be honored by banks even if the senior was not a depositor. (A.126; Passed Assembly / S.381; Banks)


Empire Zones For Agriculture This bill would extend the benefits of the Empire Zone Program to include agricultural cooperatives. Under the bill, the dairy industry would be eligible for the same tax incentives the Empire Zone Program has provided to non-agricultural businesses that either were looking to expand existing operations in New York State or have re-located here. The Empire Zone Program was first proposed in 1999 by the Assembly to stimulate job growth in the state. (A.7451-B / S.4062; Chapter 39)

Milk Labeling This bill would protect the state's dairy farmers and consumers by prohibiting manufacturers from labeling milk substitutes, which also are known as milk protein concentrates (MPCs), as real milk. Under the bill, food producers will be required to identify whether the product contains milk or MPCs to ensure that consumers are able to make informed decisions. (A.8235 / S.6141; Chapter 369)

Family Farm Health Care This bill would expand the eligibility requirements of the state's Family Health Plus program to include self-employed farmers and their families. Under the bill, the depreciated assets from the gross family income of a self-employed individual would not be included in the formula used to determine eligibility for the Family Health Plus program (A.7307-B; Passed Assembly / S.3833; Social Services)

Kosher Law Protection Act of 2004 This bill would enact the Kosher Law Protection Act of 2004. The bill would require vendors to disclose on kosher food product labels the name of the person who has designated the food as kosher. The bill aims to ensure that consumers of these products can be certain that required preparation procedures are in compliance with kosher law. (A.9041-A / S.5757A; Delivered to the governor)

Animal Fighting This bill would make it a felony to sell or offer for sale animals for fighting purposes. (A.8586-A/S.5172-A; Delivered to Governor)

Agricultural Marketing of Trails This bill would authorize the state's Department of Agriculture and Markets to designate farm trails, apple trails and cuisine trails in the state to promote greater agricultural marketing and promotional opportunities for agricultural producers. (A.9436-B/S.5864-B; Chapter 248)

Agricultural Assessment This bill would ensure that all qualified beginning farmers receive an agricultural assessment if they meet the gross sales value requirement during their first year of operation. Through the agricultural assessment program, eligible farmers are able to receive a reduced assessment rate in most areas of the state, which helps keep farming viable in higher taxed communities. (A.9437 / S.6014; Chapter 10)

Farmland Viability Program Funding This bill would clarify the scope of plans submitted for funding through state's Farmland Viability Program and require that such plans be approved by the Commissioner of Agriculture and Markets. (A.9520-A / S.2777-B; Delivered to governor)

Farm Land Inventory This bill would require the Department of Agriculture and Markets to establish and maintain an inventory of farmland available for purchase, rent or transfer in New York State. (A.9470-A; Passed Assembly / S.6197-A; Rules)

Orchard and Vineyard Crops as Agricultural Land This bill would give start-up farmers a four-year agricultural assessment, or tax exemption, on orchard acreage without having to meet the $10,000 income eligibility requirement. (A.10115-C/S.6016-B; Delivered to Governor)

Wholesale Milk Purchases This bill would require certain wholesale purchases of milk to satisfy the term of their existing contracts and to give seven-days notice when changing suppliers. (A.1454-B/S.660-B;Chapter 434)

Beginning Farmer Loan Program This bill would establish a beginning Farmer Loan Program through bonds issued by the state's Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC). Under the bill, the EFC would be authorized to provide financial assistance to first-time farmers for the purchase of agriculture property. (A.8360-A/S.3734-A;Delivered to governor)

Dangerous Dogs This bill would extend the definition of dangerous dog to include any dog that attacks a farm animal or a companion animal. The measure also would increase a dog owner's accountability, and provide increased judicial leeway in determining the level of danger a dog presents and in imposing a remedy that will best address the animal's problematic behavior. (A.6635-C/S.5910-B; Delivered to governor)


Holocaust Victims Package This legislation is aimed at making the state's Holocaust Claims Processing Office more effective in its efforts to help individuals recover assets stolen from them during the Holocaust. The legislative package includes measures that would:

  • require all banks doing businesses in New York State to inform account holders of the state's Holocaust Claims Processing Office (A.10195; passed Assembly);
  • create the New York State Banking Holocaust Advisory Board that will, after consulting with the appropriate organizations, make recommendations on how better to serve the victims and families of Holocaust survivors (A.10194; passed Assembly); and
  • mandate the state superintendent of banks submit annual reports on the activities of the Holocaust Claims Processing Office (A.10196; passed Assembly).

Dormant Account Fee Banned This bill would prohibit financial institutions from charging their account holders a fee in excess of five dollars for account inactivity (A.8808; Passed Assembly)

Account Fee Notification This bill would require that banking institutions provide advance notice to their account holders before charging a fee for account inactivity. (A.8809; passed Assembly)

Check Cashers This bill would clarify and ensure that Article 9-A of the Banking Law governs the cashing of checks for payees that are not natural citizens and would strengthen and enhance the regulation of check cashers. (A.11796-A / S.7710-A; Chapter 432)


Assembly Passes Clergy Reporting This bill would add clergy to the list of individuals who are required by law to inform the state child abuse hotline when they become aware of these types of incidences. The measure also would require information of abuse committed by an official of a religious organization to be reported to law enforcement.

The bill also would mandate that church organizations review their records over the past 20 years for reports of child abuse by clergy members who continue to provide services to their religious institution. The measure would charge violators who fail to report incidents of child abuse with a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail. (A.1516; Passed Assembly)

Accidental Drowning Prevention This bill would require that the entire grounds of a day care facility or pool or body of water that is adjacent to the property of such a facility so that a containing barrier is present to prevent an accidental drowning. (A.9172 / S. 5711; Chapter 62)

Relinquishing Custody of Disabled Children This bill would allow parents to seek and obtain the necessary services for their disabled children without having to relinquish custody, as the current law now requires. (A.5320; Passed Assembly/S.3843; Children and Families)

Helping Children in Foster Care Secure Permanent Homes This bill would reform the management of foster care cases to ensure that children are placed in permanent homes as soon as possible. The measure would require the same judge and legal representative be assigned to the same case through its lifetime. It also would mandate regularly scheduled court reviews to monitor permanent home placement efforts and to ensure that children and their families are receiving the services they need to address their problems. In addition, the bill would reduce foster care stays, minimize the disruption and hardship on children's lives and secure important federal funding for the state's child welfare system. (A.11039; Passed Assembly)


Emergency Funding This bill would provide $26.5 million in emergency funding to help cover the costs for essential municipal services in the cities of Albany ($1,461,975), Buffalo ($13,712,805), Rochester ($3,225,915), Syracuse ($5,642,685) and Yonkers ($2,480,583). This legislation would help municipalities that have reached their constitutional taxing limits and are unable to raise additional revenues to pay for key services. (A.9282 / S.5876; Chapter 30)

NYC Veteran Vendors This bill would amend and make permanent Chapter 227 of the laws of 1998 related to disabled veteran vendors in the City of New York.

The legislation would expand the number of New York City specialized veteran vending licenses from 60 to 105 and would allow such vendor license holders to vend the city's Midtown core area. (A.9889 / S.6250; Chapter 11)

Buffalo Bonds and Notes This bill would authorize a one-year extension for the city of Buffalo to issue bonds and notes at private sale. The legislation would ensure that the city has access to a funding source to pay for key projects. (S.5724-A; Chapter 22)

NYC Relocation and Employment Assistance Program This bill would extend through July 1, 2007, the Relocation and Employment Assistance Program (REAP) to provide enhanced benefits and new criteria to encourage businesses to relocate to or within the city, and would create a comparable Lower Manhattan REAP to provide a $3000 benefit per employee for companies moving into Lower Manhattan from outside of New York City. (A.11459/S.7444; Delivered to Governor)

Yonkers Bonds and Notes This bill would extend for one year the authority of the city of Yonkers to issue bonds and notes through negotiated sale. The legislation is critical to maintaining the city's financial stability and independence. (A.11065/ S. 7221; Chapter 148)

Lower Manhattan Redevelopment This bill would enact provisions to allow the city of New York to expedite the reconstruction/redevelopment of Lower Manhattan. The legislation also would ensure the coordination of construction activity among public and private agencies.

In addition, the bill would prohibit the use of fuel with a sulfur content greater than 15 parts per million in Lower Manhattan in order to reduce the impact diesel-engine emissions have on air quality and the public's health. The measures also would require the use of retrofit technologies on exhaust systems to reduce emissions. It would apply to all construction vehicles involved in the public rebuilding effort of Lower Manhattan. (A.11700/S.7626; Chapter 259) (A.11716/S.7652; Chapter 231)


Terrorism Prevention, Preparedness and Enforcement Act The bill would enhance the state's ability to prevent acts of terrorism and to prosecute those who commit these crimes. The legislation would toughen penalties for individuals convicted of possessing or using chemical or biological weapons. Under the bill, an individual convicted of a terrorist act could face a prison sentence of life without parole.

In addition, the measure would eliminate the statute of limitations for crimes that cause death or serious physical injury, allowing the prosecution of terrorists at any time; add terrorist offenders to the state DNA databank; authorize certain wiretapping or eavesdropping on terrorism suspects; increase penalties for money laundering; establish the state Office Of Homeland Security; expand first-responder training; enhance airport security; and create an advisory council to develop a new statewide wireless network. (A.11723-A / S.7685; Chapter 1)

"Fair Share" Federal Security Money This resolution would urge Gov. George Pataki and the state's congressional delegation to secure New York State's "fair share" of homeland security funds. The resolution points out that despite the consensus of experts that New York State is one of our nation's likeliest terror targets, it continues to get shortchanged under the federal State Homeland Security Grant program (SHSGP). In 2003, New York State received only $5.09 per capita under the SHSGP, while Wyoming received $35.67. (K.1946; passed Assembly)

Flight School Checks The bill would require that any person applying for flight school in the state must undergo a criminal background check. Under the bill, all flight school applicants would be subject to criminal background checks involving the state Division of Criminal Justice (DCJS). Under the bill, DCJS also would be authorized to exchange with and request criminal history information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. (A.3512-A; Passed Assembly)

Rockefeller Drug Law Reform The bill would increase the possession thresholds that are required to meet certain Class A-I and A-II felony sentences from four to eight ounces and two to four ounces, respectively, and eliminate parole for such offenders.

Under the Assembly plan, a drug court would be established in each county and prosecutors in all cases would get the first chance at deciding whether low-level, non-violent drug offenders would be diverted from prison to drug-treatment programs. Only after this initial prosecutorial determination had been made would the judge be empowered to make a decision on treatment. The legislation also would give judges greater discretion to impose appropriate sentences designed to fit the facts and circumstances of each drug-related crime.

Although the bill is not the comprehensive solution the Assembly sought, it does represent an important step in the right direction. (A.11895 / S.7802; Chapter 738)

Gun Package

Sniper Rifle Ban This bill would ban the civilian possession, sale and use of military style .50-caliber weapons. These sniper rifles are capable of disabling armored personnel carriers used by the military and shooting down aircraft at a range of more than a mile away. (A.7039-A; Passed Assembly)

Children's Weapon Accident Protection Act This bill would help protect children from accidental shootings by establishing five new crime categories for the negligent storage of a weapon. The legislation also would require gun retailers to alert consumers about the new safe weapons storage requirements. Under the bill, individuals convicted of failing to store safely a firearm where serious injury results could face a prison sentence of up to seven years. (A.4615-C; Passed Assembly)

Gun Trafficking Crackdown This bill would prevent the flow of guns into the illegal gun market by imposing reasonable measures to prevent the sale and transfer of guns to criminals by gun dealers. The measure also would increase criminal penalties for illegal gun possession and sales. (A.8456-B; Passed Assembly)

Childproofing Firearms This bill would make it a class A misdemeanor for retailers to sell guns that are not childproof. The measure would require guns to be equipped with certain safety features designed to make it difficult for an average five-year-old child to fire a weapon, such as a 10 pound- trigger pull or the execution of a series of multiple motions to make a gun operational. (A.3311; passed Assembly)

Good Conduct Ban This bill would eliminate the ability of violent felons to receive a "certificate of good conduct" or a "certificate of relief from disabilities" in order to legally carry a gun. Currently, convicted felons can lawfully possess a rifle or shotgun and obtain a firearms license if they obtain a certificate of good conduct. (A.4428; Passed Assembly)

Domestic Violence This bill would require that judges in a criminal or family court proceeding inquire if the defendant owns a firearm and the location of such gun. Under the bill, judges would be mandated to ask defendants if they own a gun when orders of protection are sought. (A.6820; Passed Assembly / S.5298; Rules)

Order of Protection Violators This bill would increase penalties for persons who violate orders of protection involving firearms. Under the bill, violators could be charged with a class E felony and sentenced to up to four years in prison. The bill also would prohibit persons convicted of certain misdemeanor crimes of domestic violence from obtaining a firearm license. (A.8282-A Passed Assembly / S.5017-A; Rules)

Ballistics Database This legislation would expand the gun ballistics identification database, which was created four years ago, to include long guns and both bullets and casings from guns that do not eject casings on firing. It also would implement a more comprehensive registration process and require that guns used in crimes be compared with the current database of new guns sold. Under the bill, law enforcement officials would have a better chance of tracking a gun used in a crime and bringing violent criminals to justice. (A.8542-B; Passed Assembly)

Sex Crime Package

Child Luring This bill would criminalize the act of luring a child for the purpose of committing a heinous crime. Under the bill, individuals convicted of child luring could be convicted of a class C felony and sentenced to up to 15 years in prison. (A.11521; Passed the Assembly)

Sex Offender Registration This bill would impose an additional penalty upon convicted sex offenders who fail to comply with the registration and verification requirements of the state Sex Offender Registration Act (SORA), known as Megan's Law. The bill would increase the period of time a sex offender must continue to comply with Megan's Law by adding to that time the number of days the sex offender failed to register or verify with the state. (A.11522; passed the Assembly)

DNA Databank Expansion This bill would expand the state DNA databank to include a host of felony and misdemeanor crimes. Under the bill, the newly added crimes would include the crime of terrorism; unlawful imprisonment; facilitating a sex offense with a controlled substance; and persistent sexual abuse. The DNA registry is a data base of DNA samples that are taken from individuals convicted of specific crimes, as they are processed through the state's criminal justice system. (A.11721 / S.7659; Chapter 138)

Sex Offender Registration Photo The bill would require that a contemporaneous photograph be taken of a released sex offender when the offender files required registration information under Megan's Law. (A.8758; Passed Assembly)

Missing Child Information This bill would allow for the distribution of information alerting the public to a missing child through the Amber Alert plan to also be disseminated via electronic mail. In addition, the information also could be provided to one or more Internet and commercial mobile service providers serving the community. (A.11532 / S.7319; Chapter 381)

Joan's Law This bill would impose a mandatory sentence of life imprisonment without parole on individuals 18 years of age and older who are convicted of committing murder during the course of certain sex offenses involving victims less than fourteen years old. (A.11557 / S.7488; Chapter 459)

Toll Free Sex Offender Directory This bill would change the current telephone information service of the statewide Sex Offender Registry from a fee- based "900" telephone number to a toll free telephone information system. The bill also directs registry officials to accept multiple names of individuals from Little League, Scout and other youth organizations that wish to check the names of their volunteer staff against the statewide registry. (A.11590 / S.7552; Delivered to the governor)

Sex Offender Notification This bill would require the DCJS to notify sex offenders sentenced in New York State who are required to register with the state under Megan's Law that the registration requirements also may exist under the laws of other states and U.S. possessions. The measure also would require DCJS to notify these other jurisdictions about their obligation to alert DCJS when sex offenders relocate to New York State or establish employment or attend school in this state. (A.11599 / S.7548; Delivered to the governor)

Public Lewdness This bill would increase the maximum period of probation for public lewdness from one year to three years. The legislation is a preventative measure aimed at addressing the early stages of inappropriate behavior that studies have shown are exhibited by individuals who have become sex offenders. (A.9855 / S.6649; Chapter 568)

Gun License Revocation This bill would allow a firearms license that is held by an individual who violates an order of protection by physically injuring another person to be revoked or suspended. Under the measure, such violators of orders of protection also would be ineligible to obtain a gun license. (A.3337; Passed Assembly / S. 273; Codes).

Special DNA Indictments This bill would provide a statutory mechanism for prosecutors to indict unidentified individuals by a fictitious name in DNA cases. Under the bill, a special fictitious indictment would be established to permit a grand jury to indict DNA evidence belonging to an unknown person using a name such as "John Doe" or "Jane Doe." Under the bill, an indictment based on the DNA profile would stop the clock on any applicable statute of limitations, and allow full prosecution when the suspect is identified and apprehended. (A.7134-A; Passed Assembly)

Methamphetamine This bill would make it a class E felony to steal or possess anhydrous ammonia for the purpose of making methamphetamine. Anhydrous ammonia is a product commonly used in the agriculture industry. It is a key ingredient in the manufacture of methamphetamine, a highly addictive, mind altering stimulant \ drug that may cause irreversible damage to human brain cells. (A.855-A; Passed Assembly / S.432; Rules)

Methamphetamine Study This bill would require the Department of Environmental Conservation to study the use of anhydrous ammonia, an agricultural fertilizer additive, to prevent its use in the manufacture of methamphetamine. (A.10882 / S. 6377; Chapter 357)

Stalking Law Toughened This bill would require that witnesses and victims be notified when a court issues a special order of protection and that the order be registered with the local police. The legislation also allows police to remove a defendant when the conditions of the special order of protection are violated. (A.10974-A / S.7176; Chapter 107)

Confidential Personal Information This bill would ensure that individuals involved in a civil court proceeding could request that personal information about themselves be kept confidential. Under the bill, the court would be prohibited from releasing personal information if the court determined that disclosure would pose an unreasonable risk to the safety of those involved in a civil law suit. (A.10103 / S. 5522-A; Chapter 111)

Community Policing The Assembly Police Community Relations legislative package, which aims to provide law enforcement agencies with the tools they need to serve their communities effectively, includes legislation that would:

  • authorize cities with a population of 100,000 or more to provide additional compensation to police department employees with certain language skills (A.5367; Passed Assembly);
  • prohibit racial or ethnic profiling by police agencies and require the collection of data regarding traffic stops and "stop and frisk" incidents (A.11542; Passed Assembly);
  • impose reporting requirements and certain limited restrictions on "no-knock" search warrants (A.8848-A; Passed Assembly); and
  • authorize the state attorney general to investigate and prosecute alleged instances of police misconduct (A.6488; Passed Assembly / S.649; Rules).


Crackdown On "Do Not Call" Violators This bill would increase the fine for individuals who violate the state's "Do Not Call" law. Under the legislation, fines would increase from $5,000 to $11,000. (A.10145 / S.6041; Chapter 417)

Gift Card Fee This bill would require that vendors and retailers eliminate any retroactive fees on gift certificates or cards. The measure also would ban merchants from charging monthly fees until a gift certificate or card goes unused for 12 months. (A.10333-B / S.6612-B; Chapter 171)

Gift Card Disclosure This legislation would require vendors to disclose the terms and conditions of gift certificates or gift card at the time of purchase. It also would identify those fees that are allowable for unexpired certificates. (A.10334-A / S.6611-A; Delivered to governor, .11789 / S.7708; Chapter 507)

Global Positioning Devices The bill would ban automobile rental companies from equipping rental vehicles with global positioning technology systems to determine or impose costs or fees. (A.11256-A / S.7588; Delivered to governor)

Airbags This bill would require that airbags used as safety restraint devices in automobiles be offered as a standard item or a single option and not only be offered within a package of options. The legislation aims to provide consumers with an affordable way to equip new vehicles with airbag safety systems. (A.11341-A; Passed Assembly / S.7402-A; Rules)

Social Security Number Requests This bill would discourage businesses from requesting the Social Security numbers of customers in order to process a purchase or service agreement. Under the bill, businesses would be required to disclose whether requesting a customer's number is necessary to comply with a federal law. Where there is no legal basis to provide the number, the legislation would prohibit businesses from denying merchandise or services to customers who refuse to disclose it. (A.3949; Passed Assembly / S.2201; Codes)

Consumer Privacy To protect the privacy of New York State residents and limit the dissemination of consumer information, the Assembly approved legislation that would:

  • prohibit the sale, lease or exchange of a consumer's electronic mail address and other personal identifying information obtained on-line without consent (A.5153; Passed Assembly / S. 4557; Consumer Protection); and
  • ban the sending of unsolicited advertising through fax machines. (A.2266; Passed Assembly).

Sale of Personal Information This bill would prohibit the sale of personal information by credit card companies. The bill aims to protect this information from being distributed to marketers without authorization. (A.2837; Passed Assembly/S.3195; Consumer Protection)

Children's Clothing Safety This bill would define "drawstring," "tie," "hood," "neck opening," "toggle" and "aglet." The legislation also would prohibit the sale of any clothing from children's size 2T up to children's size 16 that has a drawstring at the bottom opening of an upper garment or a drawstring at the waist longer than three inches. It would prohibit the sale of any children's clothing up to and including children's size 12 that has a hood or neck opening drawstring. (A.10866/S.6927; Chapter 255)

Price Gougers The bill would give individuals who have been charged excessive prices for goods or services during an emergency a private right of action, enabling them to seek restitution from the offending parties. Currently, only the state attorney general has the power to take legal action against price gougers. Under the measure, violators would face a minimum penalty of $1,000 and a maximum of $5,000. (A.5155; passed Assembly)

Quick Weight Loss Dangers This bill would alert the public to the dangers of rapid weight loss. The legislation would require persons providing weight-loss services or selling weight-loss products to provide consumers with information about the medical hazards associated with losing weight too fast. (A.586; Passed Assembly)

Laser Pointer Sale This bill would prohibit the sale of laser pointers to individuals under 18 years of age. (A.2485-A; Passed Assembly)


Political Polling Banned This bill would prohibit the state's public authorities from conducting political public opinion polls. The measure responds to an incident last year when the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) conducted a poll that included questions about the performance of the governor, other elected officials and specific individuals seeking elected office. (A.8004; passed Assembly)

Business Loans for Employee Military Leave This bill would allow the state Urban Development Corporation to issue loans to small - and medium-sized businesses that have suffered or are likely to suffer economic injury as a result of company personnel being ordered to active duty with the armed forces during a period of military conflict. (A.1884; Passed Assembly / S.1419; Finance)

Public Authority Oversight This bill would address the continuing problems of abuses by state authorities and public benefit corporations. The measure establishes the public authorities office of inspector general (IG). It also would authorize the creation of a public authorities independent budget officer (IBO). (A.9010-C; Passed Assembly)

Utility Hearing Notice This bill would require utility companies to include notices in their bills when public hearings are scheduled to take place on rate hikes. (A.65; Passed Assembly)

MTA Reform/Metropolitan Transportation Authority Review Board This bill would create the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Operating Program Review Board as an independent budget office. It also would allow for the appointment of the MTA inspector general by the attorney general. (A.7998-E; Passed Assembly)

Javits Convention Center This bill would enable the expansion of the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City. It would allow for a thorough review of the proposal and would ensure that the community has the opportunity to comment on the Javits project. The measure does not authorize the construction of a sports stadium in connection with the center's expansion. (A.11896 / S.7803; Chapter 3)


Solitary Confinement This bill would prohibit prison inmates who suffer from serious mental illness from being placed in solitary confinement. The legislation would establish prison treatment programs that would confine these inmates in a way that is consistent with the appropriate treatment of the mentally ill and the safety and security of the facility. (A.8849-A; Passed Assembly)


Empire Zone Reform This bill would extend the Empire Zone Program until March 31st, 2005 so that the program can be further reviewed and information gathered in order to bring about meaningful reforms. (A.9021-A; Passed Assembly)

Excelsior Linked-Deposit Program Loan Extension This bill would extend certain loan periods under the Excelsior Linked-Deposits Program. (A.6035 / S.3333; Chapter 291)

Excelsior Linked Deposit Program Expansion This bill would include eligible businesses in certain areas designated under the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act of 2000 in the Excelsior Linked Deposit Act loan program. Under the bill, businesses located in federal empowerment zones, enterprise communities and renewal communities would also be eligible for the low interest loans currently provided to small businesses located in Empire Zones. (A.6477; Passed Assembly / S. 3432; Finance)

Federal Grant Match Program for New York Universities for Technology Development This bill would create in the state Office of Science, Technology and Academic Research, a program that would match federal grants awarded to New York universities for technology development.

This bill would establish a formula for awarding these grants and the criteria for evaluating applications for those funds, which would be based on positive economic, environmental, health or other benefits to New York and its citizens. (A.7987-A; Passed Assembly / S.7067-A; Finance)

Economic Development Performance Plans This bill would establish the New York State Private Industry Review Council. The bill would require the council to establish economic development program performance plans, make evaluations and submit them to the governor and the Legislature with recommendations on how to improve the success of the state's economic development policies. (A.3470; Passed Assembly)

Job Outsourcing Report This bill would direct the state commissioner of labor to report on issues relating to offshore outsourcing of information technology jobs and the future of the state's job market (A.11613 / S.6338; Passed Both Houses)

Ban On Job Outsourcing This bill would prohibit companies that receive aid from New York State from outsourcing jobs out of state. The legislation would mandate that companies who send jobs elsewhere would be ineligible for state financial assistance for five years. In addition, the measure would require violating companies to reimburse the state for the public funds they received. (A.11682; Passed Assembly / S.6040; Corporations, Authorities and Commissions)

Small Business and Entrepreneurs Preference This bill would require state economic development agencies to provide preferences to small businesses and entrepreneurs in the programs that they administer. (A.3913; Passed Assembly / S.7065; Commerce, Economic Development and Small Business)

New York First This bill would require research institutions that receive state economic development grants to consider New York companies first as their primary suppliers when purchasing materials and services for their operations. (A.8408; Passed Assembly)

Manufacturing Funds This bill creates the manufacturing competitive grants program to stimulate research, applied technology, and manufacturing in New York State. (A.10482-A; Passed Assembly)

Liquor Store Sales This bill would allow liquor store retail establishments to keep business hours seven days a week. (A.9560-B / S. 6060-B; Chapter 60)


School Aid This appropriation within the state budget would provide a $740.47 million increase in education aid over the 2003-04 state fiscal year. It also would provide $555 million more school aid than the governor's budget proposal for the 2004-05 state fiscal year. Not only does it reject the governor's $369 million cut to the state's schools, but it continues funding for critical education programs, including education resources contained in the Assembly's LADDER program, such as Universal Pre-K, $201.9 million; Full-day Kindergarten, $37 million; class size reduction, $138.3 million; minor maintenance and repair aid, $50 million; and extended day/school violence prevention, $30.2 million.

Assembly CFE Plan The bill would provide an additional $6.1 billion in operating aid for schools in New York State. This funding commitment would be phased during the next five years and distributed through a foundation formula - with New York City schools receiving 63.9 percent of that funding and more than 86 percent going to high-need districts across the state. Schools could have received a $1.223 billion increase in operating aid for the 2004-05 school year.

Additionally, the Assembly's CFE response includes a statewide $2.2 billion capital plan and accountability measures. This legislation would address the June 2003 Court of Appeals decision, which ruled in favor of the Campaign for Fiscal Equity's (CFE) claim that students attending New York City schools are not receiving a sound basic education and that the state education finance systems were inadequate in funding the city's schools. The court set a deadline of July 30, 2004 for the Legislature to reform the school aid formula in order to ensure that the city's school children receive the opportunity for a sound basic education. (A.11692; Passed Assembly)

Dignity for All Students Act This bill would enact the "Dignity for all Students Act" to prevent harassment and discrimination of students on school grounds, based on a person's actual or perceived race, national origin, ethnic group, religion, disability, sexual orientation or gender. (A.1118; Passed Assembly/S.1925; Education)

Financial Disclosure of School Board Candidates This bill would require that candidates for membership on school boards disclose aggregate contributions in excess of $500 made to their campaign. (A.8558-A/S.5971-A; Delivered to governor)

Full-Time Day Instruction The bill would authorize school districts to require minors from 16 to 17 years of age to attend full-time day instruction. (A.1892-A / S.1487; Chapter 183)

Vending Machines in Schools This bill would prohibit vending machines located on school grounds or properties from selling, during school hours, food or beverages that are of minimal nutritional value to students. (A.6563-B; Passed Assembly/S.4556-A; Education)


Help America Vote Act (HAVA) To bring New York State into compliance with the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002 and be eligible for up to $230 million in federal funds, these measures would:

  • establish voter identification requirements (A.11816 / S.7743; Delivered to governor)
  • require polling places to be accessible to physically disabled voters (A.5473-A; Passed Assembly);
  • establish the Election Administration Consolidation and Improvement Act of 2004, which would place the responsibility for the care, custody and control of voting machines with the county boards of elections. It would require election inspectors, poll clerks and election coordinators to receive training and requires the county to be responsible for paying all poll workers. (A.8833-B; Passed Assembly);
  • initiate a statewide administrative complaint procedure. (A.8841-A; Passed Assembly)
  • bring New York State into compliance with federal regulations for new voter identification requirements that include establishing a statewide voter registration list, changing the voter application form and authorizing the state Board of Elections to administer a system that allows a voter's registration record to be confidential (A.8842-A; Passed Assembly); and
  • create the Voting Systems Standards Act, which includes provisions that would require the examination of voting machines and ballot counting, establish performance levels a voting machine must meet to receive state Board of Election approval, provide for uniform voting technologies to be used statewide, ensure persons with disabilities will be able to cast a secure secret ballot, provide a voter-verifiable audit trail and eliminate all punch-card voting systems. (A.8847-A; Passed Assembly)

Voting Records Confidentiality This legislation would authorize officials to keep the voter registration information of a domestic violence victim confidential. Under the bill, a victim can request that their voter records not be available for public inspection. The measure would allow officials acting in their official capacity to have access to a victim's voter information. (A.3221; passed Assembly)

Inaugural Committee Reporting This bill would require committees which form to promote or aid the inauguration of an elected official to file receipts and expenditures as campaign committees are required to do. (A.182; Passed Assembly)


Public Utility Safety The bill would require public utilities operating in New York State to conduct scheduled inspections of their equipment for its safety and reliability. Under the bill, the state Public Service Commission (PSC) would be mandated to adopt standards for equipment inspection, as well as requirements for the reporting of incidents, such as cases of people and animals coming in contact with electrically charged units. The bill addresses the tragic death this past January of a Manhattan woman who was fatally electrocuted while walking her dog. (A.4297-C; Passed Assembly)

Power Failure Prevention This resolution would call on the president of the United States and Congress to enact mandatory standards to enhance the reliability of the nation's electric power grid. The measure aims to avoid the power shortages that the Northeast experienced in the black out of August 14, 2003. (K.2696; Passed Assembly)

HEAP Expansion The resolution calls on the president of the United States and Congress to provide additional federal funds for the low-income Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) by expanding HEAP income eligibility levels. (K.1432; Adopted).

Strategic Oil Reserve This resolution calls on the president of the United States to release an emergency supply of crude oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to buffer the price of gasoline. (K.2597; Adopted by Assembly)

Utility Rate Increase This bill would require the state PSC to consider the economic impact of increased utility rates and whether the charges are just and reasonable when determining rate hike requests. (A.522; Passed Assembly / S.4218; Energy and .1702-A; Passed Assembly)

Power Plant Siting The bill resolves the issue concerning the size and cumulative community impact of power plants by requiring review and certification. The bill also would require the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to conduct a joint study on the cumulative impact of emissions in areas affected by power generating facilities. The legislation also would address the disproportionate siting of plants in disadvantaged communities by requiring the siting board to examine the "environmental justice" of locating a plant in certain areas of the state. (A.6248-B; Passed Assembly)

Long Island Utility Oversight Panel The bill would provide increased accountability and transparency in the operation of the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA). This legislation would require LIPA to conduct and make public its financial audits. It also would mandate that certain rate increase proposals would be reviewed by the state PSC with public participation. (A.8005-A; Passed Assembly)

Electric Utility Standards This bill would establish reliability standards for electric utilities in order to ensure that the energy industry delivers a product that energy consumers can count on. The legislation also would establish the appropriate mechanisms and procedures to enforce the new standards. (A.11223; Passed Assembly)

Power For Jobs Program This bill would provide low cost power for economic development under the state Power for Jobs Program. The measure would continue to make power available to eligible employers. Since its inception in 1997, the Power for Jobs program has helped to create or retain several hundred thousand jobs throughout New York State.

Under the bill, businesses with existing and lapsed Power for Jobs contracts with the New York State Power Authority would be maintained and extended through December 31, 2008. (A.11645-A; Passed the Assembly)

Low Cost Power for Military Bases This bill would permit the Power Authority to provide low-cost power to military bases in New York State in order to retain the jobs and economic benefits these bases provide to the surrounding communities. (A.11578A / S.7600-A Chapter 386)

Wind Net Metering This bill would create a wind net metering program. The measure aims to encourage the use of renewable wind electrical generating equipment for residential customers and farmers. (A.4245-A / S.4890-E; Chapter 423)


Mercury Product Labeling and Recycling This bill would help reduce human exposure to mercury by requiring the labeling and recycling of consumer products containing mercury as well as prohibit the sale of mercury-added novelty items, fever thermometers and the use of elemental mercury in schools. (A.10051-B / S. 7399; Chapter 145)

Restricting Chemical Flame Retardants This bill would prohibit the manufacture, processing or distribution of products containing more than one-tenth of one percent of polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE), a dangerous chemical flame retardant often added to consumer products. (A.10050-A/ S.7621; Chapter 387)

Prohibiting the Possession of Wild Animals as Pets This bill would prohibit the possession of wild and exotic animals as pets in order to help protect the health and safety of New York residents. (A.2684-F/S.7616; Delivered to Governor)

Superfund-Brownfields Technical Amendments This bill would make technical corrections to Chapter 1 of the Laws of 2003, relating to Brownfield Cleanup program and the State Superfund to ensure the successful implementation and administration of the state's environmental remediation programs. (A.11802/S.7726; Chapter 577)

Promoting Smart Growth This bill would require state spending on new roadways, utilities and other infrastructure to be consistent with smart growth principles. (A.8651-A; Passed Assembly / S.6255-A; Finance)

Protecting the State's Freshwater Wetlands The purpose of this bill is to provide DEC with regulatory authority over freshwater wetlands of one acre or more in size and other wetlands of significant local importance. (A.7905-A; Passed Assembly/S.4480-A; Rules)

Hazardous Substance Release This bill would make it a crime to fail to notify the DEC of a release of hazardous substance. (A.8461; Passed Assembly)

Low-Sulfur Fuel The bill would require the DEC to adopt regulations prohibiting any person from manufacturing, selling or offering for sale gasoline, diesel fuel and home heating fuel that does not meet requirements for reduced sulfur content. (A.3923-A; Passed Assembly)

Open Burning This bill would prohibit the open burning of solid waste. (A.5884; passed Assembly / S.3340; Environmental Conservation)

Electric Plant Emissions This bill would cap carbon dioxide emissions from electric generating facilities, a significant cause of global warming, at 25 percent less than their 1990 total by January 1, 2008. (A.10049; Passed Assembly)

Auto Disposal Facilities This bill would require vehicle dismantlers and scrap processors to apply to the DEC for a solid waste management permit to operate. Under the bill, DEC would also be required to adopt regulations to govern the operation of facilities that dispose of automobiles and car parts. (A.8835-B; Passed Assembly / S.7232; Environmental Conservation)

SEQR Standing This bill would ensure that individuals are allowed to bring private actions alleging violations of the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR). (A.8673; Passed Assembly/S.6493; Environmental Conservation)

Nuclear Power Plant Disclosure This bill would require operators of nuclear power plants to give notice of scheduled and unscheduled releases of radioactive materials and of breakdowns or malfunctions. (A.6424; Passed Assembly / S. 4058; Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs)

Banning Insect Repellents with High Concentrations of DEET This bill would ban the sale of insect repellents with high concentrations of chemical DEET. Under the bill, products designed for human use would be banned if they have a DEET concentration of more than 30 percent. (A.5963; Passed Assembly)

Freshwater Wetland Protection The bill would strengthen the state's freshwater wetland laws by imposing stiff fines on individuals who violate these environmentally sensitive lands. The bill would increase fines for criminal violations from $3,000 to $10,000. The measure aims to ensure that current law is able to protect the state's wetlands effectively from criminal activities that could impede or endanger the critical role wetlands play in maintaining a safe water supply. (A.645; Passed Assembly)

Electronic Recycling Standards These bills would establish an electronic equipment recycling programs and direct the DEC commissioner to develop rules and regulations establishing standards for the recycling, reuse and remanufacturing of electronic equipment. (A.3073; Passed Assembly/S.897; Rules and .3633-A; Passed Assembly/S.890-A; Environmental Conservation)

Ballast Water This bill would provide for the management of ballast water from shipping vessels in an effort to prevent the introduction of nonindigenous species. (A.5659-A; Passed Assembly/S.2567-A; Environmental Conservation)

Four Pollutant Bill This bill would direct the DEC to implement air pollution standards for power plants regarding nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide, carbon dioxide and mercury. (A.5933-A; Passed Assembly)

State Pesticide Phase Out This bill would provide for the phaseout of state use of pesticides on state property and for state agency pest management plans. (A.5969-A; Passed Assembly)

Environmental Justice These bills would require the DEC to consider environmental justice issues when conducting the state environmental quality review process. Under the bill, DEC also would be required to publish a list of those areas in the state that are most adversely affected by existing environmental hazards. (A.5938-A; Passed Assembly) (A.5938-A; Passed Assembly)

Reducing Exposure to Creosote This bill would prohibit the manufacture and sale of creosote, a potentially hazardous wood preservative derived from coal tar. (A.5930-F / S.4975-B; Veto Memo 23)

Increasing Hunter Safety This bill would require every person hunting for big game with a rifle, shotgun, pistol or revolver to wear an outer garment or hat made of solid or patterned fluorescent orange material. (A.10052-A/S.6878-B;Veto Memo 221)


Reduced Age for Retirement This bill would permit retirement after 25 years in pension system regardless of age, due to the prevalence of lung disorders that are job connected. The bill is limited to the employees of the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority. (A.10025/S.6374; Passed Both Houses)

Pension Reform This bill would provide local government employers with a $980 million dollar saving in employee pension benefits. (A.11758 / S.7677; Chapter 260)

Retiree Benefits Protection This bill would prohibit the loss of health insurance benefits of public employee retirees (A.4963; Passed Assembly / S.972-A; Civil Service and Pensions)

Permanent Agency Shop This bill would make agency shop fees permanent in all public employee units within the state since the employee organizations representing those units are responsible for the costs of representing both members and non-members. (A.3533; Passed Assembly/S.199; Civil Service and Pensions)

Temporary Salary Employee Agency Shop Fees This bill would extend the right of public employee organizations to deduct agency shop fees from salaried employees for two more years. Under the bill, agency shop fees would be made payable by all public employees until 2004. (A.4897/S.2315; Chapter 342)

CSEA Contract This bill would implement collective bargaining agreement between the state and the Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) for the period from April 1, 2003 through March 31, 2007. Under the bill, employees represented by CSEA would receive a pay increase of 2.5 percent in 2004; 2.75 percent in 2005, three percent in 2006 and $800 in 2007. (A.11281 / S.7344; Chapter 103)

PEF Contract This bill would implement collective bargaining agreements between the state and the Public Employees Federation (PEF) for the period from April 1, 2003 through March 31, 2007. Under the bill, employees represented by PEF would receive a pay increase of 2.5 percent in 2004; 2.75 percent in 2005, three percent 2006 and $800 in 2007. (A.11801 / S.7719; Delivered to governor)

UUP Contract This bill would implement the collective bargaining agreements between the state and the United University Professors (UUP) for the period from April 1, 2003 through March 31, 2007. Under the bill, employees represented by UUP would receive a pay increase of 2.5 percent in 2004; 2.75 percent in 2005, three percent in 2006 and $800 in 2007. (A.11696 / S.7632; Chapter 137)

Court Employees Contract This bill would implement collective bargaining agreements between the state and employees of the unified court system for the period from April 1, 2003 through March 31, 2007. Under the bill, court employees would receive a pay increase of 2.5 e percent in 2004; 2.75 percent in 2005, three percent in 2006 and $800 in 2007. (A.11125 / S.7246; Chapter 203)


Procurement Lobbying Reform The Assembly procurement lobbying reform legislation, which aims to increase public disclosure of the state agency and authority procurement process, would:

  • regulate the interactions between lobbyists and government officials. It would expand the definition of lobbying to include any effort to influence a public official. The measure also would define a lobbyist as a person or entity working with a government official to secure a contract for goods and services or for the purchase, sale or lease of real property. Furthermore, it would encompass efforts related to the negotiations of casino gambling compacts between the state and Indian tribes. It also would prohibit contingency payments based on the successful procurement of governmental contracts. (A.9062-A; passed Assembly) and
  • require that decisions to award state contracts be made solely on the merits of proposals. The legislation would require the appointment of procurement integrity officers and the implementation of procedural controls in order to prohibit improper lobbying. (A.6322-B; passed Assembly).

Remembering 9/11 This bill would designate September 11th as "September 11th Remembrance Day," a day of commemoration. (A.11673; Passed Assembly / S.7580; Delivered to Governor)

Patriot Plan II This bill would enact Patriot Plan II. The legislation would provide tax relief to New Yorkers serving in the U.S. military. It also would increase daily pay for the state's National Guard members. In addition, the plan includes measures that would grant extensions for professional licenses; provide college tuition awards, supplement burial allowances; and apply certain income tax considerations. (A.11697; Passed Assembly / S.7607; Delivered to Governor)

Crime Victim Support The Assembly passed legislation aimed at enhancing the financial and educational services available to crime victims in a way that is faster, more efficient and responsive. The legislation includes measures that would:

  • provide aid to child victims of crime who experience an exacerbation of a pre-existing disability or condition as a result of the crime (A.11647 / S.6479-A; Veto Memo 252);
  • require police officers and district attorneys to provide valuable information to crime victims about the types of assistance that are available to them through the state Crime Victims Board (CVB) (A.1739; Passed Assembly / S.6975; Crime Victims, Crime, and Correction); and
  • establish a health-care provider position on the state crime victims board to help ensure better treatment and counseling services for crime victims. (A.9944; Passed Assembly; S.3686; Crime Victims, Crime and Correction)

Crime Victim Discrimination This bill would protect domestic violence victims from housing discrimination. The bill would ban landlords from denying housing to individuals because they are a victim of domestic violence. (A.8135-A; Passed Assembly / S. 4812-A; Rules)

State Contract Waivers This bill would amend Article 15-A by prohibiting agencies from using automatic waivers of Minority and Women Business Enterprises (MWBE) when entering into contracts and would require agencies to file annual reports to the state Division of the Minority and Women's Business Development. Under the bill, the reports would be required to detail the number of state contracts that were awarded to certified MWBEs, the maximum dollar amount obligated by all contracts and the total expenditures for all contracts. In addition, this bill would create a state registry to enable certified MWBEs to be made aware of contract opportunities and require recertification of MWBEs every three years. (A.8715-B; Passed Assembly)

State Licensing Examinations on Days of Religious Observance This bill would ensure that all persons have equal access to licensing examinations administered in the State of New York by requiring the special administration of any licensing examination that occurs on a day of religious observance. (A.11562; Passed Assembly)

Dogs Used by Disabled This bill would help deter discrimination against people with disabilities who are accompanied by guide, hearing, and service dogs by creating a new penalty for repeated acts of discrimination against a person accompanied by these dogs at a public facility. (A.8752-A/S.5136-A; Chapter 295)

State Trooper Exams for Military Personnel This bill would reduce employment hardships experienced by members of the military by requiring the State Police to offer the state police trooper qualifying exams at least every six months for two years for those who are on active military service. (A.9580/S.6105; Chapter 94)


Health Care Plus This bill would phase in the state payment of local costs of the Family Health Plus program during the next two years. (A.9558-B / S.6058-B; Chapter 58)

Stem Cell Research This bill would foster biomedical research, while setting critical guidelines in the use of human stem cells in efforts to cure some of the world's most debilitating diseases. The measure would clarify the differences between human stem cell research and reproductive cloning. The legislation would allow this research to continue, while completely prohibiting reproductive cloning. (A.6249-A; Passed Assembly)

Prostate Cancer This bill would allow taxpayers to make a monetary contribution to prostate cancer research through a checkoff on the state income tax return form. Under the bill, all revenues donated to the fund would be provided to the New York State Coalition to Cure Prostate Cancer, a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to financing prostate cancer research, detection and education. (A.11669 / S.6206-A; Chapter 273)

Breast and Cervical Cancer The bill would extend medical assistance to persons with breast and cervical cancer. The bill provides for presumptive eligibility, so women can receive the care they need promptly. (A.4519; Passed Assembly)

EPIC Restorations This appropriation contained in the state budget would restore $22.6 million to fund the Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) program that was cut in the governor's budget. (A.9554-B / S.6054-B; Chapter 54 and A.9554-B / S.6058-B; Chapter 58)

Adult Home Resident Protections This bill would strengthen the authority of state agencies to address quality-of-care problems in adult homes. The measure would grant the attorney general prosecutorial and investigative powers for any crime at an adult home. It also would authorize the commissioner of the Department of Health to appoint a temporary facility administrator in cases where there is a dangerous and immediate threat to adult home residents. (A.8689-A; passed Assembly)

Nursing Home Mismanagement The bill would allow nursing-home residents direct access to a court in order to receive protection from operators who are endangering their health and safety. Under the bill, residents could request that a court appoint a receiver to intervene and administer the facility when there are conditions of mismanagement and abuse. (A.8621; Passed Assembly / S.5625; Social Services)

Medicaid Federal Matching Funds This resolution would urge the New York State Congressional Delegation to support the extension of the increase in federal matching funds for Medicaid. It would provide the state with $1.4 billion in federal Medicaid funding, providing New York with a fairer share of federal support received by other states. (K.1952; Passed the Assembly)

Shaking Baby Syndrome Video The bill would require hospitals and birth centers to request that maternity patients and fathers view a video presentation on the dangers of shaking infants and small children (A.10889 / S. 6230; Chapter 219)

Comprehensive Asthma Disease Management This bill would create a comprehensive asthma disease management and control program that would consist of asthma disease management, education and outreach services for individuals with asthma, their families and the general public. (A.2695; Passed Assembly)

Emergency Contraception This bill would authorize pharmacists and registered nurses to dispense emergency contraception to prevent unintended pregnancies. The measure would bypass the current difficulties that frequently are encountered when trying to secure a medical appointment at offices with limited hours, long waits or inconvenient locations in order to obtain contraception services. (A.888; Passed Assembly/ S.3339; Higher Education)

Annual School Lead Tap Water Testing This bill would mandate annual school tap water testing in order to monitor for lead contamination. (A.1898; Passed Assembly)

Bad Debt Charity This bill would reimburse diagnostic and treatment centers and certified home health agencies for uncompensated care. (A.9764 / S. 6174; Chapter 81)

Cardiac Defibrillator The bill would require facilities that can accommodate 1,000 or more people to be equipped with a cardiac defibrillator and to have at least one trained person capable of operating the defibrillator. According to the American Heart Association, an estimated 100,000 deaths could be prevented each year if defibrillators were more accessible in an emergency. (A.9596; passed Assembly / S.4001; Rules)

Domestic Partner Health Insurance This bill would require insurers providing family health insurance coverage to also offer coverage for the domestic partner of an insured person. (A.11464; Passed Assembly)

Hospital Visitation Rights This bill would ensure the hospital visitation rights of domestic partners. (A.9872A / S. 7688; Chapter 471)

Title of Nurse The bill would limit the use of the title "nurse" to only people legally authorized to practice nursing under the state's Nurse Practice Act. The bill also would require medical facilities to disclose the number of RN's and LPN's that are providing direct care, the ratio of patients per RNs and the number of unlicensed personnel utilized to provide direct patient care. (A.5591; Passed Assembly / S.3255; Health)

Health Insurance Access This bill would establish the New York State Health Insurance Continuation Assistance Demonstration Project to ensure the availability of health insurance for persons in episodic and seasonal employment and their dependents. (A.10127-C/ S.7054-B; Delivered to governor)

Disability Awareness Legislation

Handicapped Parking This bill would require access aisles for handicapped parking spaces to be at least eight-feet wide and clearly marked (A.5471; Passed Assembly)

Public Building Access This bill would clarify existing state law by requiring public and government facilities to make reasonable modifications to accommodate people with disabilities, as is required by the federal Americans with Disabilities Act. (A.5469; Passed Assembly)

ATM's This bill would require ATM machines to use both an audio and visual systems to relay messages to customers, so that individuals that are visually impaired can use ATM's without the assistance of another person. (A.3863; Passed Assembly)

Ballots for the Blind and Visually Impaired This bill would require that voter ballots in New York State also be printed in Braille and large-print and be made available at the request of blind and visually impaired voters. Under the bill, persons wishing to use these ballots must give notice to the local board of elections no less than 30 days before the day of the election. (A.3726-B; Passed Assembly)


TAP The enacted budget rejects the $302 million cut to the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) that the governor proposed. It also rejects the governor's plan to defer one-third of all TAP awards until a student's graduation from college. (A.9553-B / S.6053-B; Chapter 53)

SUNY / CUNY Funds The enacted budget appropriates $4 billion in capital funding for SUNY and CUNY schools, over $723 million more than the governor proposed. It also adds $50 million in operating aid for SUNY campuses, $33.3 million for CUNY senior colleges, $8 million for SUNY community colleges and $3.2 million for CUNY community colleges. The enacted budget rejects the governor's proposal to cut $115 per full-time equivalent student aid and restores $18.45 million in operating aid to SUNY community colleges and $7.3 million in operating aid to CUNY community colleges. (A.9553-B / S.6053; Chapter 53; Override veto memo 54 to 115)

Reasonable Accommodation for Professional Exams The bill would require that examinations for professions licensed by the state be administered 30 days before or after a day of religious observance. (A.11797; passed Assembly / S. 7716; Rules)

Admission to Professional Practice This bill would provide for the consideration of prior disciplinary history in evaluating an application for admission to a professional practice. (A.7515/ S.6736; Chapter 239)

Clinical Lab Technologist/Technicians This bill would enact the Clinical Laboratory Technology Act. Under the bill, clinical lab technologists and technicians would be required to be licensed or certified by New York State. (A.8094-B/S.3762-B; Passed Both Houses)

College Campus Policy on Credit Card Soliciting This bill would require that a college possess an official college credit card marketing policy before credit cards can be solicited to students. (A.11799/S.7663-B; Delivered to Governor)

Eminent Scholars and Challenge Grant Program Creates the New York State University of New York eminent scholars and challenge grant program to enable the university to attract and retain eminent faculty. (A.7142; Passed Assembly / S.349; Higher Education)

Testing Accommodations for Religious Observance Requires the State Education Department to make reasonable accommodations when a religious observance is on the same date as a licensing examination. (A.9011; Passed Assembly / S7465; Rules)

Physical Therapy Allows physical therapy treatment to be rendered by a licensed physical therapist without a referral. (A. 4582-A; Passed Assembly)


Mitchell-Lama Housing The bill would provide incentives for building owners to remain in the Mitchell-Lama housing program. Under the bill, building owners would be allowed to generate a greater return on their housing units than the current law allows, so long as they remain in the Mitchell-Lama program. It would require that rental charges would be subject to the annual rent increases established by the New York City Rent Guidelines Board, and it would provide real-property tax relief benefits to owners, as well as rent stabilization protections for tenants. (A.9851; passed Assembly / S.6396-A)

Housing Trust Fund This bill would increase the amount per unit the state Housing Trust Fund can award in grants or loans to developers of low-income housing. (A.10810-A/S.6391-A; Chapter 445)

Farm Workers Housing This bill would expand the Housing Finance Law so that affordable loans would be available to build housing for seasonal farm workers. The measure also would provide that loans be made available to workers who are employed by dairy farm owners. (A.8792-B/S.6777-A; Chapter 428)

Loft Law Extension The bill would extend current rent protections for residents of loft apartments to May 31, 2009. Current Loft Law protections are expired on May 31. The bill also would make it easier for both tenants and the New York City Loft Board to enforce the current law and would help make loan money readily accessible for landlords who need to make renovations in order to comply with existing law. (A.10140; passed Assembly)

One Year Loft Law Extension This bill extend the Loft Law for one year to May 31, 2005. (A.9560-B / S.6060-B, Chapter 60)

Loft Law Expansion The bill that would expand the Loft Law to include buildings occupied for residential purposes for 12 consecutive months between January 1, 2000, and December 31, 2003. Under the current law, Loft Law protections generally apply to buildings occupied for residential purposes in the early 1980s. (A.2717-A; Passed Assembly)

NYC Housing Bonds This bill would increase the bonding authority of the New York City Housing Development Corporation by $450 million to ensure the availability of affordable housing. (A.11286 / S.761; Chapter 227)


"Timothy's Law" This bill would require health-insurance companies to provide a level of coverage for the treatment for mental illnesses, emotional disorders and alcoholism and substance abuse that is comparable to the coverage currently provided for other physical ailments. The bill would eliminate the discriminatory practices of the health insurance industry that limit coverage for mental-health and chemical and substance-abuse treatment. (A.8301; Passed Assembly / S.5329; Insurance)

Credit Scoring This bill would regulate the use of consumer credit information by insurance carriers who sell auto and homeowner insurance policies in New York State. (A.4754-D / S.5618-D; Delivered to the governor)

New York Property Insurance Underwriters Association (NYPIUA) This bill would extend for one year the authority of NYPIUA to write homeowner's insurance/catastrophe insurance coverage, thereby ensuring that property owners in locations deemed to be "high risk" areas by insurance companies have continued access to property and casualty insurance. (A.11671; Chapter 121)

Ban Insurance "Redlining" The bill would prohibit insurance carriers from denying homeowners' insurance and auto insurance coverage based solely on geographic location of the property and the age of the structure or vehicle to be insured. The bill aims to end "redlining," a practice that discriminates against policy holders in areas of the state that are considered to be high risk. The legislation would protect New Yorkers from becoming victims of discriminatory insurance practices that unfairly prevent individuals from securing the coverage they need for their homes and motor vehicles. (A.270; Passed Assembly)

Insurance Discrimination Based on Travel The bill would prohibit life insurance companies from citing travel experiences as a basis for discriminating against a person when determining whether to deny life insurance for an applicant, cancel an existing policy or demand a higher premium. (A.9411/S.600; Delivered to governor)

Mammograms Coverage This bill would require that insurance providers provide mammogram insurance coverage for women beginning at 40 years of age. (A.7927; Passed Assembly)

Genetic Discrimination Outlawed The bill that would prohibit life and disability insurance companies from using genetic information to deny insurance coverage to New Yorkers. Under the bill, insurance companies would be banned from using genetic information to deny or cancel an individual's insurance coverage and would not be able to require genetic testing. (A.280; Passed Assembly)

State Insurance Department Review This bill would require the state Superintendent of Insurance to hold public hearings and review requests to increase health insurance rates of more than five percent. (A.6852-A; Passed Assembly / S.3757-A; Insurance)

9/11 Legal Claims Deadline This bill would extend the statute of limitations for claims arising from the September 11th attacks. Under the bill, the deadline for lawsuits for the recovery of September 11th related claims would be extended by three years to 2006 and insurers would be required to notify claimants of the deadline. (A.9090; Passed Assembly)

Car Seat Replacement Costs This bill would encourage parents not to reuse car seats that have been in an automobile accident. The legislation would require that seat replacement costs be covered under the physical damage component of insurance policies sold in New York State. (A.2797; Passed Assembly)


Judicial Selection Reform This bill would ensure that justices serving on the state Supreme Court and in other judicial offices are chosen from a pool of candidates who are well qualified, ethical and committed to the fair administration of justice. Under the bill, the major political parties would be required to create screening panels in each judicial district. These panels would have to be approved by a newly created statewide Judicial Qualifications Board. (A.11457; Passed Assembly)

Judicial Campaign Fund Raising Reform The bill would allow judicial candidates to have access to public campaign funds and set a $500 limit as the maximum individual contribution to a judicial race. (A.11456; Passed Assembly)

Child Witness This bill would increase the age limit of a child witness who would be allowed to provide live video testimony involving a sex offense. Under the bill, the age of a child witness that could testify on video would be increased by two years to 14 years of age and under. (A.10559-A / S.556-A; Chapter 362)

Orders of Protection This bill would allow civil orders of protection to be issued to members of the same household who are unrelated. Currently, the law only allows orders of protection to be issued to individuals who are related as family members. The legislation would address reports from the state Division of Criminal Justice Services, which show that a significant number of domestic violence incidents involve non-family relationships, most often are dating couples. (A.2235; Passed Assembly/S.2413-B; Judiciary)

Free Court Transcript This bill would ensure that court transcripts of a trial for murder or homicide are provided at no cost to the victim's survivors. The current law allows transcripts to be provided to indigent defendants on appeal at no cost. (A.5550; Passed Assembly / S.67; Rules)

Jury Reform This bill would extend from four to six years the period of time in which jurors who have completed jury service will not be called upon to serve again. (A.7518 / S.7247; Chapter 240)

Eminent Domain Reform This bill would require written notice to homeowners prior to public hearings in eminent domain proceedings. (A.11167 / S.11332-A; Chapter 450)

Home Inspectors Licensing This bill would establish licensing of home inspectors by New York State. (A.76-B/S.6100-B; Delivered to governor)

Article 81 Guardianship This bill would clarify confusion and inconsistent practice across the state and will better safeguard the rights of persons who are determined to be incompetent to handle their own affairs. (A.8838-A / S.6830-A; Chapter 438)


Minimum Wage Increase to $7.15 This bill would phase in an increase the state's hourly minimum wage from $5.15 to $7.10 as of January 1, 2007. The initial raise would establish a state minimum wage of $6.00 per hour effective October 1, 2005. The next increase would be $6.75 per hour effective July 1, 2006. The bill aims to ensure that the wages of working families keep pace with rising inflation costs and boost the earning ability of the many individuals who depend on minimum-wage jobs. (A.11760-A / S. 7682-A; Veto Memo 10; Overridden by Assembly)

Farm Workers Fair Labor Practice Act The legislation would give farm workers collective bargaining rights, ensure farm workers receive overtime and time-and-a-half and require that all farm and food-processing labor camps abide by the state's sanitary code. (A.2859; passed Assembly)

Sweat Shop Ban The bill would prohibit state agencies from buying products produced by 'sweatshop' manufacturers. The bill would require the state to establish reporting standards, with which all suppliers or manufacturers must comply in order to sell goods to the state. The measure also would call for manufacturers, suppliers, subcontractors and vendors that produce these products to submit documents verifying the wages and benefits they provide to their employees. (A.3008,, 8330; passed Assembly)

Fair Pay Act The New York State Fair Pay Act includes measures that would:

  • ensure that pay differentiation is not based on a person's sex, race or national origin (A.6701; Passed Assembly/S.4568; Labor);
  • propose a constitutional amendment providing comparable work wage protections (A.379; Passed Assembly);
  • implement a state policy of equal compensation for public employees (A.737; Passed Assembly); and
  • require private employers to pay comparable wages for comparable work (A.3998; Passed Assembly / S.2492; Investigations and Government Operations and .6252; Passed Assembly).

Farm Employment Agreements This bill would require that farm employers provide written agreements between themselves and their employees to provide an understanding of the conditions of employment (A.11180; passed Assembly / S.2685; Passed Chapter 212)


Library Aid This bill would amend the library funding formula to maintain support for areas that lost population under the 2000 census. (A.8365-B; Passed Assembly)

Library Loan Fund The bill would authorize the establishment of a public library revolving loan fund for capital construction projects. (A.4941; Passed Assembly)


E-911 Education This bill would require the New York State 911 Board to develop a plan to inform cell-phone users of whether or not the wireless system they have access to can provide rescue personnel with a caller's locations. The measure would require the board to issue four public reports a year that identify, on a county-by-county basis, the state's progress in implementing an E-911 system that is able to identify a caller's phone number and location. (A.7448-C,, Koon / S. 5677; Chapter 292)

Revolving Loan Fund The bill would increase maximum loan amounts under the New York State Emergency Services Revolving Loan Account to help local fire, ambulance and rescue departments finance the purchase of equipment and facilities. (A.10117 / S.6314; Chapter 370)

Firefighter and EMT Package

Service Benefits This bill would authorize municipalities to increase local volunteer service award benefits. (A.11198 / S.7355; Delivered to governor)

Health Insurance Benefits The bill would establish a temporary task force to examine whether it is feasible to provide health insurance benefits to volunteer ambulance workers. (A.11196 / S.7354; Chapter 451)

Legal Support The bill would authorize the defense and indemnification of volunteer firefighters. The measure aims to address the increasing number of volunteers who have incurred legal costs to prove they were not intentionally negligent while performing fire fighting services. (A.11197; Passed the Assembly)

Wireless Communication This resolution would memorialize the Congress of the United States to examine issues related to providing priority access to wireless communication services for first responders. (K.2368; Adopted)


Coop/Condo Rebate Bill This bill would continue a tax rebate program that reduces the inequitable treatment of owner-occupied class II properties within New York City compared to class I properties. (A.9610-B / S.6430-A; Chapter 97)

Assessor Disclosure Bill This bill would require assessors statewide to comply with ethics disclosure requirements applicable to public employee policy makers. (A.10844 / S. 6847; Chapter 85)


Business Loans This bill would establish a micro-business revolving loan assistance grant program within the rural revitalization program of the state Urban Development Corporation. The bill would authorize grants of up to $200,000 per year for establishing a revolving loan program for micro-businesses. The grants would be available to businesses relating to agricultural and forest products, tourism and enterprises that employ five or fewer full-time persons. (A.6679-A / S.2808-A; Chapter 236)

Small Business Deferred Payments This bill would require that a deferred installment payment plan be offered to small businesses for telephone service installation, initiation and nonrecurring maintenance. (A.4531; Passed Assembly/S.3334; Energy)

Small Business Office This bill would establish the Office for Small Business to provide and promote a better small business climate in the State of New York. (A.11628; passed Assembly)


Medicaid Waivers This bill would extend for two years the authority for the state Department of Health to apply for "Katie Becket" Medicaid waivers. The legislation would authorize the Medicaid reimbursement for community-based services that are not otherwise eligible under the Medicaid program. The measure would allow up to 1,200 disabled children to be served who would otherwise be placed in medical facilities. (A.10096/S.6357; Delivered to governor)

Public Assistance This bill would extend for two years the authorization for public assistance recipients to participate in work study and internship programs and have those hours satisfy public assistance work requirements. (A.10097>>/ S.6358; Chapter 83)

Eligibility/Federal SSI This bill would increase the standards of monthly need as well as increase the mandatory minimum state supplementation of federal Supplemental Security Income benefits that are paid to the aged, blind and disabled. (A.11104/S.7101; Chapter 310)

Education Programs for Welfare Recipients This bill would expand access to basic education programs for welfare recipients. The measure also would require local social services districts to count the time spent in adult literacy, English-as-a-second-language and high school equivalency programs toward a recipient's overall work requirement. (A.6503; Passed Assembly/S.4626; Rules)


Niagara River Greenway Commission This bill would create the Niagara River Greenway Commission, which would provide for the development and approval of a plan to create a greenway along the Niagara River between Lakes Erie and Ontario. (A.11710/S.7367-A; Delivered to governor)

Regulates Abandonment of State-Owned Property by Canal Corporation This bill would protect the public interest in state land abandonment procedures. It would require a public hearing for the abandonment of property valued at $50,000 or greater by the state Canal Corporation. (A.4642; Passed Assembly)

Defibrillators in Health Clubs This bill would require that defibrillators be accessible in health clubs with a membership of 2,500 or more people. It also would require the presence of at least one staff person certified to use defibrillators during club operation. (A.5084-A/S.6803; Chapter 186)

Misrepresentation of Models/Performing Artists This bill would provide local law enforcement agencies the authority to bring actions against unscrupulous individuals who misrepresent employment opportunities for models and performing artists. The bill would allow for better enforcement against these fraudulent activities, which, under the current law, are exclusive to the state attorney general. (A.6571; Passed Assembly/S.5021; Investigations and Government Operations)


Crackdown on Hit and Run Drivers This bill would increase the penalty for leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident at which a death occurred from a Class E to a Class D felony. Under the bill, violators could face up to seven years in prison. (A.11363; Passed Assembly)

DWI Reform This bill would create a new crime of "Aggravated DWI" for drivers who were convicted of driving with a 0.20 percent or higher blood alcohol level. The bill would subject the motorist to a vehicular manslaughter charge and increase the crime from a class D to a class C felony in instances where a driver killed more than one person or had a prior dangerous driving history. (A.773-C; Passed Assembly)

Vehicular Homicide This bill would make it a felony when a driver commits a major traffic violation that causes the death of another person, when the driver also was guilty of two major traffic violations in the previous 18 months or was driving with a revoked license that was imposed because of a homicide involving the use of a motor vehicle. (A.11352; Passed Assembly)

Red-Light Camera Extension This bill would extend the authorization for the City of New York's red-light camera law for five years, until December 1, 2009. The legislation would authorize the city to continue using up to 50 traffic intersections that are equipped with signal photo-monitoring devices to identify and fine the owners of vehicles which fail to stop for red lights. (A.11663 / S.7599; Chapter 667)

Red Light Camera Expansion This bill would authorize up to 75 traffic intersections in the City of New York to be equipped with red light cameras. The measure would add 25 more specially equipped intersections to the city's efforts to crack down on drivers who fail to stop for red lights. (A.4806-B; Passed Assembly)

Emergency Vehicle Safety This bill would require drivers to exercise caution and appropriately reduce the speed of their car, truck or motor cycle when approaching a stopped emergency vehicle. (A.4260-A/S.1876-A; Chapter 211)

"Safe Routes to School" Program This bill would direct the state Department of Transportation to establish a "Safe Routes to Schools" program to promote pedestrian and bicycle safety and traffic calming projects near schools. (A.10057-A/S.7267-A; Delivered to governor)

Child Restraint Safety Package

Restraint Requirements This bill would prohibit the operation of a motor vehicle unless all children aged four through six riding in it are restrained in a child restraint system appropriate for their size and weight - such as a booster seat. (A.996-A/ S.1020-A; Delivered to governor)

Booster Seats, Children Under Age Four This law would authorize children less than age four to be restrained in booster seats, if their size exceeds child-seat manufacturer recommendations. (A.613/S.6717; Chapter 232)

Children Banned from Cargo Area The bill would prohibit children from riding in the cargo area of a truck being driven on a public highway (A.601; Passed Assembly).

Rear Seat Belts This bill would require all passengers in the rear seats to wear seat belts. (A.903; Passed Assembly/S.118; Rules)

Malfunctioning Traffic Lights This bill would require motorists to stop at intersections with malfunctioning traffic lights. (A.9670-A / S.7254; Chapter 302)

School Bus Safety This bill would require that drivers of vehicles transporting pre-school or nursery-school children to or from school submit to criminal history background checks, mandatory testing of their behind-the-wheel skills and knowledge of the rules of the road, medical exams and standards for disqualification. (A. 11393; Passed Assembly)


Memorial and Veterans' Day This bill would extend eligibility for receiving Memorial and Veterans' days off to war-time veterans who are employed by school districts, board of cooperative educational services, charter schools or other educational employers receiving state funds. (A.5039; Passed Assembly/S.4294; Rules)

Military Relief Fund The bill would establish the New York military family relief fund to provide grants to members of the organized militia or a reserve component of the armed forces.

This fund would assist New York residents who are members of the militia, national guard or armed services reserves and who have been called to active duty for at least 30 days and assigned away from their homes. (A.10895; Passed Assembly / S.6627; Finance)

Tax Exemption This bill would extend eligibility for the veterans' alternative real property tax exemption to holders of the global war on terrorism expeditionary medal. (A.10417 / S.7491; Delivered to governor)

Veteran's Benefits This bill would ensure that veterans and their spouses receive all the benefits for which they are eligible. Under the bill, nursing homes would be required to forward information about newly admitted residents to the state Veteran's Affairs Office to help determine their benefits. (A.10076-B / S.3045-B; Chapter 95)

Disabled Veteran Employment This bill would provide that veterans who are certified by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or a branch of the military be allowed to present such certification as evidence of their disability. Under the bill, Purple Heart recipients would be given a priority for the employment preference established under the state Civil Service Law. (A.5044/S.6520; Chapter 65)

Residential Electric Rates The bill would direct the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) to charge not-for-profit veterans' organizations the same rates that are charged to domestic consumers, just as other utilities in the state are required to provide. (A.3796/S.2331; Delivered to governor)

State Veterans' Cemetery This bill would establishes the New York State veterans' cemetery siting committee to report on the feasibility of establishing veterans' cemeteries throughout the state. (A.11787 / S.7717; Chapter 458)

Agent Orange This bill would extend the statute of limitation for phenoxy herbicide (Agent Orange) actions for armed forces personnel who served in Indo-China for two additional years, until June 15, 2006. (A.9778 / S.6176; Chapter 68)

Vietnam War Start Date Change This bill would change the date upon which the Vietnam War was deemed to have commenced from December 22, 1961 to February 28, 1961. The legislation would align the state with the same date the federal government recognizes as the beginning of the war. The date is key in determining an individual's eligibility for veterans' benefits. (A.5043; Passed Assembly / S.3038; Veterans)


Budget Reform This legislation would amend the state Constitution and other state laws to bring about a more efficient, transparent, accountable and timely state budget process. These budget reforms would change the state fiscal year from April 1 to May 1 and create the New York State Independent Budget Office to provide objective, non-partisan analysis of state revenues, expenditures and management practices. The non-partisan office would be modeled after the Congressional Budget Office and the New York City Independent Budget Office. The reforms also would implement a contingency budget when the Legislature does not meet the fiscal year deadline. (A.11702 / S.7615; Passed Both House) (A.11702/ S.7317; Delivered to the Secretary of State; Opinion Referred to Judiciary)

Clothing Sales Tax Free Week This legislation would exempt from the state's four percent sales tax purchases of clothing costing less than $110.00 from January 31, 2005 to February 6, 2005. In addition, another sales-tax free period would be scheduled from August 31, 2004 to September 6, 2004. (A.9560-B / S.6060-B; Chapter 60) (A.9560-B / S. 7636; Chapter 120)

Security Funding This bill would appropriate $36.633 million of the federal 2003 Urban Area Security Initiative grant for the state home land security program. (A.10242 / S.6524; Chapter 16, .10243 / S.6523; Chapter 15)

New York State Assembly
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