NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
BILL NUMBER: A7579
TITLE OF BILL:
An act to amend the state finance law, in relation to the determination
of eligibility for payment of interest on amounts owed to contractors
To meet the intent of the prompt contracting law by allowing the accrual
of interest for a period of time a payment is delayed due to the fund or
sub-fund from which the payment is to be made having insufficient cash.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
Section 1 of this bill amends subdivision 2 of Section 179-f of the
State Finance Law.
Section 2 sets forth an immediate effective date and clarifies that the
act applies to invoices submitted on and after such date.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
New York's Prompt Payment Law (Article 11-A of the State Finance Law)
was enacted in 1984. The intent of the law was to encourage the timely
payment of obligations of the state. As stated in the Legislative Intent
for such Law: "Firms and organizations that do business with the state
of New York expect and deserve to be paid in a prompt and timely manner.
Unjustified delays in paying vendors, construction contractors, and
providers of service may discourage such firms and organizations from
doing business with the state of New York and may ultimately increase
the costs to the state government of purchasing materials, equipment,
and supplies; undertaking construction and reconstruction projects; and
obtaining a wide variety of professional and other specialized services
including those that are provided to persons in need. Consequently, this
legislation sets standards for the payment of bills incurred by state
agencies within specified periods of time and requires interest payments
in situations where contract payments do not conform to these standards.
Consistent with accepted business practices and with sound principles of
fiscal management, it is the intent of this legislation to encourage
state agencies in all three branches of state government to make
payments at least as expeditiously as they currently do and further to
reduce existing payment processing times whenever feasible, while at the
same time permitting the state agencies to perform proper and reasonable
financial oversight activities designed to ensure that the state govern-
ment receives the quality of goods and services to which it is entitled
and to ensure that public funds are spent in a prudent and responsible
Paragraph d of subdivision 2 of Section 179-f of the State Finance law
extended the normal timeframes for making payments by the number of days
a fund or sub-fund had insufficient cash to make the payment. It is
believed that this section was included in the original legislation
because of limitations within the Central Accounting System program in
existence at the time of enactment rather than an intentional exclusion
on the part of the Legislature. The recent upgrade to the Statewide
Financial System (SFS) allows for the calculation of interest even if a
fund or sub-fund has insufficient cash to make a payment. By deleting
this outdated paragraph, the law and the operation of SFS would match
the intent of the law.
The State Comptroller urges the passage of this proposed legislation.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE:
Based on estimates from fiscal year 2012-13 and 2013-14, the state would
incur approximately $110,000 in interest annually by eliminating this
This act shall take effect immediately.