News & Press: Breaking News

2019 Legislative Session Recap

Monday, June 24, 2019  

The 2019 Legislative Session has wrapped up and two of ASBO's Legislative Priority bills were passed by both houses.

PILOT Assessments 
(S.3972 Harckham / A.218 Paulin)
This legislation postpones the reduction in a PILOT payment due to a successful assessment challenge to the following school fiscal year.

Small City School District Debt Limit 
(S.5425 Mayer / A.7062 McDonald)
This legislation would treat small city school districts the same as other districts by factoring in their building aid to determine their debt limit for capital projects. 

Other bills of interest that passed both houses include:

Authorization to establish health insurance funds
Bedford CSD (S.2685 Mayer / A.123 Buchwald)
Frontier (S.1732 Jacobs / A.8139 Ryan)
Grand Island (S.1733 Jacobs / A.8312 Morinello)
Kenmore UFSD (S.1735 Jacobs / A.3629 Schimminger)

Notification prior to IDA approval of incentives
(S.2769 Comrie, Jr. / A. 2947 Solages)
Requires IDAs to send notifications of proposed financial incentives for a project and any reasons for deviation from their uniform tax exemption policy to affected local taxing jurisdictions. For school districts, notifications are required to be sent to the school board and district superintendent of the school district.

Clarifying substantial completion of construction 
(S.2394 Breslin / A.3552 Cusick)
This bill would define for school districts and BOCES substantial completion as the date certified by the architect or engineer when construction is code compliant and in accordance with contract documents.  The bill also requires districts to provide punch list to contractor 45 business days after substantial completion.

Insurance coverage for small employers (51-100 employees)
(S.2043 Seward / A.4947 Cook)
A chapter amendment to legislation passed last year that reduces the extension from 5 to 2 years allowing small group employers to remain in their health insurance consortia.

School bus stop-arm cameras
(S.4524-B Kennedy / A.4950 Magnarelli)
Allow cameras on school bus stop-arms to ticket drivers who illegally pass a stopped school bus. Cameras would be authorized and paid for by local municipalities, not school districts.

Polling places in small city school districts can open at 6:00 
(S.4009 Mayer / A.6540 Otis)
All independent school districts that are serving as polling places can now open at 6:00 AM.

Extending BOCES ability to lease real property 
(S.5323 Mayer / A.6671 Paulin)
Extends ability of BOCES to lease private property for up to 20 years until 2024.

Authorize BOCES to contract with preschool special education providers 
(S.5629 Mayer / A.7694 Benedetto)
Allows preschool special education programs to utilize BOCES OLAS to recruit employees.

Probationary period for tenured administrators who move districts
(S.4007 Mayer / A.8346 Benedetto)
Reduces the probationary period for tenured administrators and supervisory staff who are appointed in a new district from four years to three years.

Authorize monitor for Wyandanch CSD
(S.6588 Brooks / A.8422 Jean-Pierre)
Authorizes the Commissioner of Education, in  consultation  with the state comptroller to appoint a monitor to oversee the Wyandanch USFD.

Building Aid amnesty
Huntington (S.2976 Gaughran / A.4711 Stern)
Mahopac (S.4949 Harckham / A.7129 Byrne)
Monticello (S. 4333 Metzger / A.6331 Gunther)
Newburgh (S.1777 Skoufis / A.7056 Jacobson)
Roscoe (S.2611 Metzger / A.3666 Gunther)

Authorize Schenevus to apply to the Commissioner for an apportionment of aid 
(S.4957 Seward / S.7499 Miller)
Allows Schenevus to apply for a spin up or advance in state aid to address cash flow problems.

Flexibility for small city school districts in scheduling annual reorganization meetings
(S.5768 Mayer / A.7708 Otis)
Aligns scheduling of Board of Education reorganization meetings in small city school districts with requirements for other independent school districts. Instead of being required to hold them on the first Tuesday of July, they would have to be scheduled in the first 15 days of the month.

Pharmacy benefit management drug price negotiations
(S.6531 Breslin / A.2836 Gottfried)
Regulates how pharmacy benefit managers negotiate drug prices and requires them to conform to established standards.

Authorize a pilot electronic open bond sale program for municipalities 
(S.5886 Gaughran / A.8336 Thiele)   
This bill would allow an open auction bidding process for bonds issued by municipalities of specific size.

Workplace Violence 
(S.1720 Ramos /A.6157 Titus)
Adds school districts/BOCES to list of employers to provide workplace safety training. 

Retiree Earnings Cap Increased 
(S.1866 Breslin /A.2858 McDonald)
Increases retiree earnings cap for those receiving pension and under 65 from $30,000 to  $35,000 annually.

Religious Vaccination Exemptions 
(S.2994 Holyman /A.2371 Dinowitz) Chapter 35 of 2019
This bill ends religious exemptions for required student vaccinations. The Governor has already signed this bill into law.