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Legislative Update – Mar/Apr

Posted by GCAR on March 25, 2020
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By Conor Gillis
GCAR Government Affairs

 

 

NYSAR urges state lawmakers to fund new fair housing program in state budget
NYSAR issued letters urging Governor Cuomo and leaders of the state legislature to include new funding in this year’s state budget to establish and maintain a state fair housing tester program. NYSAR also included support for specialized training and certification requirements for fair housing instructors and increasing the maximum state fines for fair housing law violations. You can read the letter here.

Governor vetoes bill, preserving property tax abatement for coops and condos
Governor Cuomo pocket-vetoed a bill that would have made coop and condo buildings ineligible for a 17.5 percent reduction on their annual property tax bill if they failed to provide a prevailing wage to its building service workers. Interested parties argued that smaller condos and coops would struggle to pay a prevailing wage. Read more here.

NYSAR meets with special counsel to Governor Cuomo on independent contractor issue
In January, NYSAR met with special counsel to Governor Cuomo to discuss legislative efforts to reclassify certain app-based workers as employees and eliminate independent contractor status. NYSAR expressed its concerns with the proposal and the desire to make sure independent contractor status for licensed real estate professionals remains protected.  NYSAR will continue to meet with state lawmakers on this critical issue.

Department of State proposes new state regulations to enhance fair housing
On January 15, the Department of State published new regulatory proposals to enhance fair housing provisions in New York State. The proposals are subject to a 60-day public comment period. The new proposals include:

  • Requiring brokers to be responsible for providing a new disclosure on fair housing (to be furnished by the Department of State) to prospective homebuyers, renters, sellers, and landlords;
  • Requiring the posting and display of fair housing laws at real estate brokers’ offices and websites;
  • And requiring video and audio recordings of all approved fair housing instruction, which must be kept for one year following the date of recording.

The governor announced his intent to propose these new measures in December.