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A06079 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the civil practice law and rules, in relation to the reporting of awards pursuant to the New York state equal access to justice act   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: This bill would amend Section 8604 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules by replacing a reference to the Department of Audit and Control with a reference to the Department of Law.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: A.9758 (Passed Assembly) of 2013-2014   JUSTIFICATION: New York's Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA) was enacted in 1989 and was patterned after Federal legislation enacted in 1976. The EAJA authorizes an award of attorney's fees to litigants, including small businesses, not-for-profit organizations and individuals of modest means, who have been wronged by the unjustified actions of New York State agencies. The Office of the State Comptroller (OSC) is responsible creating an annual report describing the number, nature and amount of each award under the EAJA in the previous fiscal year including the agency involved in each action, and other relevant information which might aid the legislature and the governor in evaluating the scope and impact of such awards. The nature of this annual report has been ministerial on the part of OSC. The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) collects informa- tion on the awards issued during the past fiscal year from its regional offices and provides this information to OSC in a spreadsheet. OSC just produces a cover letter and attaches the data provided by the OAG. This legislation would simplify the issuing of this report by removing OSC which is extraneously made part of the process. The State Comptroller urges the passage of this proposed legislation.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE: This bill has no significant State fiscal impact.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
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