NFIB Fights Against Costly Legislation on Workplace Mandates Beyond COVID-19

Date: May 04, 2021

NFIB in New York has actively opposed legislation that would require employers to prevent exposure to a variety of airborne infectious diseases, including the flu, in perpetuity. The legislation, S.1034-B/A.2681-B, is incredibly complex, requires the potential creation of workplace safety committees which would be nearly impossible for small businesses to manage, and allows for predatory lawsuits.

 

NFIB led a press conference to discuss the issues and concerns with the bill and urged the legislature to vote against the measure. Ashley Ranslow, NY Assistant State Director for NFIB spoke about the bill’s impact on small businesses as reported by local ABC news affiliates, “this legislation is extremely broad and expansive and applies to all airborne infectious diseases beyond COVID-19 and there will be significant costs borne by small businesses.”

 

Unfortunately, the legislature ignored NFIB’s and the business community’s calls to consult with small businesses before passing the legislation. Greg Biryla, NY Sr. State Director for NFIB said, “We are disappointed with the passage of legislation imposing strict mandates related to airborne infectious diseases beyond COVID-19. Contrary to what proponents have been highlighting, this bill will have an outsized impact on small businesses who are hanging by threads because of the pandemic and resulting economic conditions. Small business owners have spent months complying with industry-specific health and safety guidelines to protect their employees and community at large. Instead of consulting with small businesses who reached out directly to legislative offices, Albany has decided to ignore their voices and pass legislation that is incredibly complex, burdensome, costly, and a magnet for predatory litigation. Small, independent Main Street businesses, owned by our family members, friends, and neighbors, need help from our elected leaders now more than ever, but instead of welcoming their valuable perspective, the door was slammed shut. We implore Governor Cuomo to consider the perspective of New York’s small businesses and the potential negative impact for our economic recovery before taking additional action on this legislation.”

 

NFIB continues to advocate for leadership to come together to allow all stakeholders to offer input on the legislation and consider changes before it is enacted.

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