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Assemblyman
Brian M. Kolb
Assembly District 131
 
Leader Kolb Again Recognized As A Champion Of Small Business – But There Is Still More Work To Do!
Legislative column from Assembly Minority Leader Brian M. Kolb (R,C,I-Canandaigua)
August 24, 2012

Earlier this week, I was honored to be publicly recognized by two of the leading voices in the fight to grow New York’s economy, protect taxpayers, reform Albany and restore fiscal accountability to State government: the Business Council of New York State Inc., and Unshackle Upstate. Both the Business Council and Unshackle Upstate are non-partisan, independent and highly respected public policy organizations that advance agendas which mirror my own focus on making New York a more affordable place to live, work, raise a family, start a business and pursue your dreams.

BUSINESS COUNCIL AND UNSHACKLE UPSTATE RATE ME AT THE HIGHEST OF ALL LEGISLATIVE LEADERS FOR SUPPORTING PRO-GROWTH, PRO-JOBS, PRO-TAXPAYER POLICIES

First, the Business Council announced that I earned a 92 rating – the highest of any Legislative Leader serving in State government – for my continued, vocal support of a pro-business, pro-growth, pro-jobs agenda. Then, Unshackle Upstate reported that I had scored a 93 – again, the highest of any Legislative Leader – on its 2012 Scorecard due to my strong support for growing the economy and protecting taxpayers. These ratings and scores reflect my two decades of private sector business experience and emphasis on offering smart solutions and providing real leadership – not engaging in partisan politics or silly name calling – to deliver positive progress for our Empire State.

ACCOLADES ARE GREAT, BUT THERE IS STILL MORE WORK TO DO!

While the recognitions and accolades are appreciated, they are not the reason why I fight so hard to transform New York’s economy. I lead this fight because of a deep-rooted belief in the promise and potential of New York’s entrepreneurs and job creators. Unfortunately, despite all the success and real progress of the past two years, there are still many obstacles getting in the way of New York’s road to economic recovery, with Albany’s so-called ‘Wage Theft Prevention Act” being one of the largest – and costliest – roadblocks.

NEXT UP: REPEAL AND REPLACE ALBANY’S “WAGE THEFT PREVENTION ACT” TO REDUCE COSTS FOR JOB CREATORS, GROW JOBS FOR NEW YORKERS

Passed in 2010 and implemented in March of 2011, the Wage Theft Prevention Act is one of the costliest, most job-killing, headache-inducing, time-consuming paperwork mandates ever imposed by Albany on private sector job creators – and that is saying something!

The Wage Theft Prevention Act is the poster child for how Albany continues to saddle businesses with expensive mandates that hurt job creation and weaken our economic competitiveness with the 49 other states and the rest of the world. At the heart of the Wage Theft Prevention Act is something called the “Annual Notice Requirement.” Here is what this provision does and why it hurts private sector businesses:

  • Mandates that all private sector employers provide a separate written pay notice to every employee working in New York and that a written acknowledgment of the receipt of the notice be obtained yearly from every employee by their employer;
  • This notice must be provided not only in English, but also in the primary language of the employee; and
  • Employers are then responsible for maintaining these records… for six years!

However, nearly all the aforementioned information is already found on every employee's paycheck stub and the additional notice given to incoming employees. This is the very definition of an unnecessary, impractical and nearly impossible paperwork overload that Albany expects businesses to comply with!

WAGE THEFT PREVENTION ACT COSTS NEW YORK JOB CREATORS MILLIONS

The Wage Theft Prevention Act imposes massive administrative costs on every private sector employer operating in the Empire State. These additional costs can span from hundreds of dollars for small businesses, thousands of dollars for medium-size businesses, to tens of thousands of dollars for large businesses, with the total combined costs of complying with the Wage Theft Prevention Act reaching well into the millions, as noted by the Business Council.

These added costs are on top of all the other considerable expenses New York job creators endure in the form of property taxes, income taxes, business taxes, labor, energy and workers’ comp costs, fees, fines, surcharges – the list goes on and on.

MORE WORK REMAINS: REPEAL AND REPLACE THE WAGE THEFT PREVENTION ACT!

This session, one of the smart solutions I offered to the 2012-13 State Budget would have effectively repealed the Wage Theft Prevention Act’s Annual Notice Requirement, thus removing one of this job-killing mandate’s costliest provisions. Even though my smart solution was rejected, I will continue working to repeal and replace the Wage Theft Prevention Act so private sector job creators can spend more time running and growing their businesses and less time worrying about and complying with Albany’s endless paperwork headaches and hassles.

NEXT WEEK: What’s next for property tax relief!

As always, constituents wishing to discuss this topic, or any other state-related matter should contact my district office at (315) 781-2030, or e-mail me at kolbb@assembly.state.ny.us.

 
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