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2004-2005 NEW YORK STATE EXECUTIVE BUDGET
PUBLIC PROTECTION AND GENERAL GOVERNMENT
ARTICLE VII LEGISLATION
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT

CONTENTS

Article VII Memo Content
PART DESCRIPTION STARTING PAGE NUMBER FOR:
SUMMARY, HISTORY & STATEMENT IN SUPPORT BUDGET IMPLICATION EFFECTIVE DATE
A Merge the Crime Victims Board into the Division of Criminal Justice Services. 7 (Part A) 35 (Part A) 42 (Part A)
B Expand the parking ticket surcharge statewide. 7 (Part B) 35 (Part B) 42 (Part B)
C Make permanent the authorization to fund part of the State’s public safety efforts with Motor Vehicle Law enforcement fees. 8 (Part C) 35 (Part C) 42 (Part C)
D Permit grand jury testimony by police officers to be provided by affidavit rather than requiring personal appearance. 8 (Part D) 36 (Part D) 42 (Part D)
E Increase most new filing fees for alcoholic beverage licenses and permits to reflect State administrative costs. 9 (Part E) 36 (Part E) 43 (Part E)
F Authorize the use of owner-controlled insurance by State agencies, public authorities, and municipalities. 10 (Part F) 36 (Part F) 43 (Part F)
G Clarify the authority of the Department of Civil Service regarding the administration of the Employee Health Insurance Fund. 10 (Part G) 36 (Part G) 43 (Part G)
H Establish comprehensive pension reform. 11 (Part H) 36 (Part H) 43 (Part H)
I Establish a State licensing fee on pistol and revolver permits and an expiration date for all gun licenses. 15 (Part I) 37 (Part I) 43 (Part I)
J Allow localities to assess a fee up to $5 on vehicle insurance policies to fund local public safety needs. 16 (Part J) 37 (Part J) 43 (Part J)
K Increase the maximum civil penalty for unfair and deceptive business practices and false advertising. 16 (Part K) 37 (Part K) 43 (Part K)
L Abolish the State Liquor Authority and transfer its functions to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control. 17 (Part L) 37 (Part L) 44 (Part L)
M Extend the period when the Division of Parole can process a parole violation warrant for certain out-of-State parole violators. 17 (Part M) 37 (Part M) 44 (Part M)
N Eliminate certain transcript requirements for Workers’ Compensation Board proceedings. 18 (Part N) 37 (Part N) 44 (Part N)
O Increase fees paid by operators of nuclear power reactors to fund enhanced State and local emergency preparedness. 18 (Part O) 38 (Part O) 44 (Part O)
P Increase the penalty for violations of New York State’s No Telemarketing Sales Call Law to conform with the Federal penalty. 19 (Part P) 38 (Part P) 44 (Part P)
Q Permit a new standard using “aggregate weight” for lab analysis of illegal drug evidence. 19 (Part Q) 38 (Part Q) 44 (Part Q)
R Authorize the Consumer Protection Board to recover costs incurred while investigating complaints pertaining to the Motor Fuel Practices Act. 20 (Part R) 38 (Part R) 44 (Part R)
S Establish a medical payment cap and catastrophic allowance for crime victim claims. 21 (Part S) 38 (Part S) 44 (Part S)
T Encourage intergovernmental cooperation to expedite statewide deployment of enhanced wireless 911 service. 21 (Part T) 39 (Part T) 45 (Part T)
U Authorize the Superintendent of Banks to establish various assessments, fees and penalties by regulation. 22 (Part U) 39 (Part U) 45 (Part U)
V Establish a new fee to be paid by convicted sex offenders. 23 (Part V) 39 (Part V) 45 (Part V)
W Authorize mandatory surcharges and the crime victim assistance fee to be imposed in cases where the defendant paid restitution. 23 (Part W) 39 (Part W) 45 (Part W)
X Authorize counties to assess probation fees to support county probation services. 23 (Part X) 39 (Part X) 45 (Part X)
Y Require a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee for defendants adjudicated as youthful offenders. 24 (Part Y) 39 (Part Y) 45 (Part Y)
Z Require that speeding ticket fines be based on the initial charged offense. 24 (Part Z) 40 (Part Z) 45 (Part Z)
AA Increase the minimum daily rate of pay for New York National Guard members on State active duty. 25 (Part AA) 40 (Part AA) 46 (Part AA)
BB Accelerate the reimbursement payment for indigent legal services. 25 (Part BB) 40 (Part BB) 46 (Part BB)
CC Authorize the Division of Criminal Justice Services to implement automated photo-monitoring at work zones to reduce speeding. 26 (Part CC) 40 (Part CC) 46 (Part CC)
DD Increase registration and renewal fees for student athlete agents to reflect State administrative costs. 27 (Part DD) 40 (Part DD) 46 (Part DD)
EE Establish new filing fees for various services provided by the Public Employment Relations Board. 27 (Part EE) 40 (Part EE) 46 (Part EE)
FF Clarify when the Division of Parole is responsible for reimbursing local jails for housing a presumptively released, paroled or conditionally released violator. 28 (Part FF) 41 (Part FF) 46 (Part FF)
GG Authorize deposits, temporary loans for various funds, and bond cap changes; propose provisions relating to debt and other general fiscal management issues. 28 (Part GG) 41 (Part GG) 46 (Part GG)
HH Provide General Purpose Local Government Aid to cities, towns and villages. 31 (Part HH) 41 (Part HH) 47 (Part HH)
II Authorize comprehensive mandate relief initiatives for localities. 32 (Part II) 41 (Part II) 47 (Part II)
JJ Authorize the Municipal Bond Bank to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds on behalf of distressed upstate cities. 33 (Part JJ) 42 (Part JJ) 47 (Part JJ)
KK Propose alternative Municipal Assistance Corporation refinancing plan. 34 (Part KK) 42 (Part KK) 47 (Part KK)

MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT

A BUDGET BILL submitted by the Governor in
Accordance with Article VII of the Constitution

AN ACT to amend the executive law, in relation to the division of criminal justice services and the crime victims board; and repealing certain provisions of such law relating thereto (Part A); to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the parking ticket surcharge (Part B); to amend the insurance law and the state finance law, in relation to motor vehicle law enforcement fees (Part C); to amend the criminal procedure law, in relation to police officer statements and business records as evidence in grand jury proceedings (Part D); to amend the alcoholic beverage control law, in relation to adjusting the fees for the filing of an application or permit (Part E); to amend the insurance law, in relation to authorizing the use of owner controlled insurance programs for certain public construction contracts (Part F); to amend the civil service law and the state finance law, in relation to the health insurance fund (Part G); to amend the retirement and social security law, the general municipal law and the local finance law, in relation to pension funding reform (Part H); to amend the penal law, in relation to gun licensing fees (Part I); to amend the insurance law, in relation to motor vehicle law enforcement fees imposed at the local level (Part J); to amend the general business law, in relation to the penalty for unfair and deceptive business practices (Part K); to amend the alcoholic beverage control law and the executive law, in relation to eliminating the state liquor authority and to provide for the continuation of the authority’s powers and duties; and to repeal certain provisions of the alcoholic beverage control law and the executive law relating thereto (Part L); to amend the executive law, in relation to violation of parole, conditional release or post-release supervision (Part M); to amend the workers’ compensation law, in relation to requiring transcripts of legal proceedings (Part N); to amend the executive law, in relation to increasing the fee paid by nuclear power generating plant operators in support of state and local radiological emergency preparedness requirements (Part O); to amend the general business law, in relation to the no telemarketing sales call statewide registry (Part P); to amend the penal law, in relation to aggregate weight standards for controlled substance offenses (Part Q); to amend the general business law, in relation to settling claims under the motor fuel marketing practices act (Part R); to amend the executive law, in relation to establishing a cap on medical expenses and mandating that acceptance of payment by the crime victims board to a medical provider constitutes payment in full (Part S); to amend the public authorities law and the county law, in relation to the promotion of intergovernmental cooperation for the deployment of enhanced wireless 911 service and to clarify that each cooperating entity is eligible for funding or reimbursement of eligible wireless 911 service costs (Part T); to amend the banking law, in relation to the authority of the superintendent of banks to set certain assessments, fees and penalties (Part U); to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing a supplemental sex offender victim fee (Part V); to repeal subdivision 6 of section 60.35 of the penal law relating to exempting defendants who pay restitution or reparation from the mandatory surcharge and crime victim assistance fee (Part W); to amend the correction law, the criminal procedure law, the domestic relations law, the executive law and the penal law, in relation to a local electronic monitoring and drug testing administrative fee; and to amend chapter 55 of the laws of 1992 amending the tax law and other laws relating to taxes, surcharges, fees and funding, in relation to extending the expiration of certain provisions of such chapter (Part X); to amend the penal law and the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the imposition of a mandatory surcharge and crime victim assistance fee upon youthful offenders (Part Y); to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the prosecution of traffic offenses (Part Z); to amend the military law, in relation to increasing the minimum rate of pay for New York national guard members called by the governor to state active duty (Part AA); to amend the state finance law, in relation to the indigent legal services fund; and to repeal subdivision 2 of section 722-f of the county law relating to reporting requirements for indigent legal services (Part BB); to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the denial of registration or renewal for certain violations; in relation to the suspension of registration for failure to answer or pay penalties with respect to certain violations; and, in relation to establishing a photo-monitoring program to impose fines for failing to obey work zone speed limits (Part CC); to amend the general business law, in relation to registration and renewal fees for athlete agents (Part DD); to amend the civil service law, in relation to imposing new fees for certain labor dispute resolution filings (Part EE); to amend the executive law, in relation to the revocation of parole (Part FF); in relation to providing for the administration of certain funds and accounts related to the 2004-2005 budget; in relation to authorizing certain payments and transfers; to amend the state finance law, in relation to the school tax relief fund; to amend the state finance law, in relation to the issuance of certificates of participation; to amend the private housing finance law, in relation to housing program bonds and notes; to amend chapter 389 of the laws of 1997, relating to the financing of the correctional facilities improvement fund and the youth improvement fund, in relation to the issuance of bonds; to amend the public authorities law, in relation to certain indebtedness; to amend chapter 81 of the laws of 2002, relating to providing for the administration of certain funds and accounts related to the 2002-2003 budget, in relation to the issuance of bonds; to amend the state finance law, in relation to the issuance of state-supported debt; to amend the public authorities law, in relation to the powers of the dormitory authority; to amend the education law, in relation to the financing of certain capital costs; to amend the state finance law, in relation to the community college tuition and instructional income fund and variable rate bonds; to repeal section 97-n of the state finance law, relating to the Hudson river valley greenway fund; to repeal section 94-c of the state finance law, relating to the supplemental jury facilities fund; to repeal section 97-fff of the state finance law, relating to the Hudson river park fund; and providing for the repeal of certain provisions upon expiration thereof (Part GG); to amend the state finance law, in relation to continuing unrestricted aid to local governments at prior year levels and on currently observed payment dates (Part HH); to amend the civil service law, in relation to the consideration of ability to pay in the determination of arbitration awards; to amend the general municipal law, the state finance law, the education law, the environmental conservation law, the highway law, the labor law, the public authorities law, the county law, the facilities development corporation act, chapter 560 of the laws of 1980 relating to authorizing the city of New York to adopt a solid waste management law, the New York state urban development corporation act, chapter 345 of the laws of 1968 relating to establishing a United Nations development district and formulating and administering plans for the development of such district, chapter 35 of the laws of 1979 relating to appropriating funds to the New York state urban development corporation, chapter 735 of the laws of 1979 relating to providing for construction of an American stock exchange/office facility in New York county, chapter 825 of the laws of 1987 amending the public authorities law and other laws relating to the construction and improvement of court facilities, and chapter 592 of the laws of 1998 constituting the Hudson river park act, in relation to requirements for separate contracts for certain public works; to amend the civil practice law and rules, in relation to payment of certain podiatric expenses; to amend the general municipal law, the public housing law, the state finance law, and chapter 585 of the laws of 1939 relating to the rate of interest to be paid by certain public corporations upon judgments and accrued claims, in relation to the rate of interest on judgments; to amend the education law, the public authorities law, the public housing law, the racing, pari-mutuel wagering and breeding law, and the New York city health and hospitals corporation act, in relation to providing for the exclusive jurisdiction of the court of claims over claims against boards of education and school districts, the community colleges of the city university of New York, the New York city transit authority, the metropolitan transportation authority, the triborough bridge and tunnel authority, the New York city housing authority, the New York city off-track betting corporation and the New York city health and hospitals corporation, and claims against the officers and employees thereof that arise out of their employment, for damages for personal injury, injury to property and wrongful deaths; to amend the general municipal law and the public officers law, in relation to the authorization of intermunicipal agreements; to amend the general municipal law, in relation to the merger and consolidation of municipal governments; and to repeal section 101 of the general municipal law, section 135 of the state finance law, section 151-a of the public housing law, subdivisions 1 and 2 of section 458 of the education law, subdivisions 1 and 2 of section 482 of the education law, subdivision (b) of section 6281 of the education law, paragraph f of subdivision 27 of section 1680 of the public authorities law, paragraph b of subdivision 1 of section 1734 of the public authorities law, subdivision 2 of section 2350-o of the public authorities law, paragraph (a) of subdivision 6 of section 2466 of the public authorities law, subdivision 1 of section 2722 of the public authorities law, section 11 of chapter 795 of the laws of 1967 relating to the construction of boards of cooperative educational services buildings, section 9 of chapter 892 of the laws of 1971 amending the public authorities law relating to construction by the dormitory authority, section 21 of chapter 464 of the laws of 1972 amending the public authorities law and other laws relating to providing facilities for community colleges and the powers of the state university trustees, and section 29 of chapter 337 of the laws of 1972, amending the correction law and other laws relating to facilities for the department of correctional services, subdivisions (a) and (b) of section 4545 of the civil practice law and rules, and subdivision (e) of rule 4111 of the civil practice law and rules, relating thereto (Part II); to amend the public authorities law and the state finance law, in relation to creating fiscal stability bonds for eligible cities (Part JJ); to amend the public authorities law, in relation to authorizing an extension of the bonding authority for the municipal assistance corporation for the city of New York (MAC); to amend the tax law, in relation to the temporary sales tax assistance for cities of one million or more; to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to expanding authorization to the city of New York to install and operate red-light cameras at no more than one hundred fifty intersections at any one time; to amend chapter 746 of the laws of 1988, amending the vehicle and traffic law and other laws relating to the civil liability of vehicle owners for traffic control signal violations, in relation to making the provisions thereof permanent; to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to the placement of traffic-control signal violation-monitoring devices and the reporting of such; to amend local law number 46 of the city of New York for the year 1989 amending the administrative code of the city of New York, relating to civil liability of vehicle owners for traffic control signal violations, in relation to the issuance of bonds; to amend the public authorities law, in relation to establishing the New York city transitional finance authority (TFA) as a permanent ongoing borrowing mechanism for the city of New York; to amend the local finance law, in relation to granting authorization to the city of New York to create a new general debt service fund and statutory lien to secure such debt; to amend the local finance law, in relation to limitation on amount of local contract indebtedness; to repeal part A4 of chapter 62 of the laws of 2003, amending the public authorities law relating to payments made to the city of New York; to repeal part V of chapter 63 of the laws of 2003, amending the public authorities law relating to payments made to the city of New York; and to repeal part K of chapter 686 of the laws of 2003, amending the tax law, the New York state financial emergency act for the city of New York and the public authorities law relating to termination of certain taxes in a city with a population of one million or more and the termination of the municipal assistance corporation for the city of New York (Part KK)

PURPOSE:

This bill contains provisions needed to implement the Public Protection and General Government portion of the 2004-05 Executive Budget.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS, EXISTING LAW, PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY AND STATEMENT IN SUPPORT:

Part A – Expand the parking ticket surcharge statewide.

This bill amends the Vehicle and Traffic Law to apply the $15 parking ticket surcharge statewide.

Section 1809-a of the Vehicle and Traffic Law is amended to expand the $15 mandatory parking ticket surcharge statewide. Currently the $15 surcharge applies only to parking ticket convictions in the State’s six largest cities. Under this proposal, every parking ticket conviction in the State would be subject to the $15 surcharge.

This bill establishes equal penalties for all parking violations throughout the State and will produce additional revenue for State and local governments to support necessary services.

Part B – Merge the Crime Victims Board into the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

This bill improves services to victims of crime by merging the Crime Victims Board within the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

This bill merges the Crime Victims Board (CVB) into the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS). The newly created Office for Crime Victim Services will absorb all agency and board functions, powers, and duties of CVB. The current five-member board will be maintained.

Article 22 of the Executive Law established the Crime Victims Board as the State agency responsible for developing and coordinating programs for crime victims. Existing law provides for a five-member Board to make decisions on compensation claims, appeals, and crime victim grants.

The Crime Victims Board was established to provide financial assistance to individuals who suffer physical injury or death as a result of a violent crime and who would, without compensation, otherwise incur financial hardship or become dependent upon public assistance. Since its establishment, the responsibilities of the agency have grown tremendously and expanded from victim compensation to a full range of services for crime victims.

The merger of the Crime Victims Board with the Division of Criminal Justice Services brings added value and assets for the benefit of the crime victim. This includes an extensive technology network and various databases that can be used to provide a quicker claims response. Current CVB agency staff can be relieved of administrative duties to focus on improving victim services. In addition to enhanced victim services, this consolidation of programs allows the Commissioner of the Division of Criminal Justice Services to reduce the administrative costs associated with such services.

Part C – Make permanent the authorization to fund part of the State’s public safety efforts with Motor Vehicle Law enforcement fees.

This bill permanently enacts provisions enacted in the 2003-04 Budget to fund part of the State’s public safety efforts with motor vehicle law enforcement fees.

This bill makes permanent provisions enacted in the 2003-04 Budget to direct increased revenue from motor vehicle law enforcement fees into the State Police Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Account (MVLEA) to offset the costs of highway safety and public security.

The changes proposed in this bill were included as part of the 2003-04 Executive Budget, and modified by the Legislature. This bill amends the statutes that will be in effect on April 1, 2004 to permanently enact provisions currently in effect.

Last year, the Enacted Budget differed from the Executive Budget by including a provision to cap the amount of revenue that is deposited into the State Police Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Account. The cap has been incorporated into this bill.

This bill directs $60.4 million of motor vehicle law enforcement fee revenue to the MVLEA and caps this account. The Motor Vehicle Theft and Insurance Fraud Prevention Fund (MVTIFPF), in the Division of Criminal Justice Services, will receive the first $4.7 million in revenue from enforcement fees assessed on commercial and other motor vehicles. Additional revenue from these vehicles will be transferred to the MVLEA until the $60.4 million cap is reached. Any additional revenue then will be deposited in the MVTIFPF.

This bill amends the State Finance Law to alter the eligible uses of the funds in the MVLEA to include highway safety and public security, and provides that $9.1 million will continue to support anti-auto theft costs of the State Police.

Part D – Permit grand jury testimony by police officers to be provided by affidavit rather than requiring personal appearance.

This bill permits the admissibility of statements by police officers and business records into evidence for grand juries by affidavit, precluding the need for personal appearances.

This bill amends the Criminal Procedure Law to permit police officers to provide a sworn written or oral statement into evidence for grand jury proceedings, and allows the admission of business records into evidence in grand jury proceedings by way of sworn affidavit instead of live testimony by the custodian of the records.

Section 190.30 of the Criminal Procedure Law covers the rules of evidence for grand jury proceedings. It establishes rules concerning professional reports prepared by public servants or from others employed in scientific or additional professional fields. It also covers what is permissible within written or oral statements submitted under oath for grand jury proceedings.

Law enforcement agencies expend significant public funds for officers to appear before grand jury proceedings, frequently on an overtime basis. Often there are time delays in such cases, requiring sworn police members to wait for a particular case to be called. Permitting sworn statements to be submitted to grand juries instead of requiring personal appearances will generate significant savings in time and money for State and local law enforcement agencies.

With the advance of the Internet and telecommunications, many criminal prosecutions, including child pornography, Internet fraud, and identity theft cases, now require business records from companies in locations throughout the country. Current law requires that when business records are presented to a New York grand jury, an individual employed by the company must physically appear and testify that the business records were prepared and retained in the ordinary course of business.

Child pornography, organized crime, and identity theft prosecutions are increasingly endangered by the inability of prosecutors to obtain such witnesses from businesses around the country in a timely manner. Additionally, prosecutors incur the cost of transporting witnesses, and businesses suffer economic loss from lost manpower hours as a result of the current system.

This bill proposes the same process for presenting business records as is used for presenting scientific evidence, an expert’s valuation testimony, and a victim’s testimony regarding unauthorized possession of property.

Part E – Increase most new filing fees for alcoholic beverage licenses and permits to reflect State administrative costs.

This bill increases the filing fees associated with various alcoholic beverage licenses or permits to reflect administrative cost increases.

This bill amends the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Law, by adjusting certain fees required to be paid when filing new license applications and permits.

Current ABC Law requires a fee to be paid when filing a new or renewal application for a license or permit. Many of these fees have not been changed in nearly a quarter century.

Part F – Authorize the use of owner-controlled insurance by State agencies, public authorities, and municipalities.

This bill amends the Insurance Law to permit the use of owner-controlled insurance by State agencies and public authorities.

This bill amends section 2504 of the Insurance Law to permit State agencies and public authorities to use owner controlled (“wrap-up”) insurance on single public construction projects exceeding $50 million, and multiple construction projects exceeding $100 million, generating savings on the insurance component of such large capital construction projects.

Currently, the Insurance Law prohibits State agencies, local governments and most public authorities from directly purchasing most of the insurance required for capital construction projects. These public entities, instead, must require that insurance be purchased by the contractors to whom project contracts are awarded.

Implementing an Owner Controlled Insurance Program (OCIP) will allow the State and public authorities to comprehensively insure all eligible capital projects and provide cost efficiencies when compared to the current practice of insuring each individual capital contract through the winning contractor. Additional cost savings are achieved because the State and public authorities are able to capitalize on their favorable loss experience and eliminate contractor mark-ups, significantly reducing premiums. An OCIP can also increase construction contracting opportunities for minority and women-owned businesses that may have difficulty in obtaining insurance.

Part G – Clarify the authority of the Department of Civil Service regarding the administration of the Employee Health Insurance Fund.

This bill makes technical amendments regarding the administration of the employee health insurance fund.

This bill clarifies the authority of the Department of Civil Service with respect to the administration of the Health Insurance Fund established under section 167 of the Civil Service Law. This Fund was created in 1956 to account for payments in support of health insurance benefits provided to active and retired employees of the State and other employers who participate in the health insurance program administered by the Department of Civil Service. In April of 2003, the Office of the State Comptroller raised questions over the Department’s statutory authority in accounting for health insurance program dividends and making payments from the Fund without an appropriation.

This bill clarifies statute to codify the Department’s longstanding practice of accounting for health insurance program dividends and making payments from the Fund without appropriation authority. While current law clearly authorizes the use of dividends to offset future premium charges, in the past the Department has needed to temporarily use these dividends for cash flow purposes and, in addition, the Enacted Budget has traditionally authorized the State to receive its share of dividends in advance. With respect to the appropriation issue, making payments from the Health Insurance Fund without an appropriation is appropriate and consistent with the administration of other funds used to administer employee benefits such as the Common Retirement Fund, the Dental Insurance Fund and the Social Security Contribution Fund among others.

Part H – Establish comprehensive pension reform.

In an effort to modernize and strengthen the State Retirement System, this bill proposes a comprehensive pension reform initiative that: (1) addresses the need for a more reasonable level of increases to local government and State pension contributions; (2) offers additional fiscal relief to local governments through more flexible pension funding laws; (3) strengthens the State’s retirement systems by imposing strict rules on funding new benefits; and (4) requires better reporting from the New York State and Local Retirement Systems.

Sections 1 and 2 of the bill require the State Comptroller to consider the following options to limit the volatility of local government and State pension costs:

· Modify current actuarial methods used to determine employer pension contributions, including: alternative approaches to recognizing investment gains and losses; a longer amortization period for recent benefit improvements; and limits on the amount contribution rates can increase from year-to-year;

The Comptroller will have to report his determinations to the Governor and the Legislature by June 1, 2004.

Section 3 of the bill authorizes local governments to use employee benefit reserve funds to pay their pension obligations.

Section 4 provides local governments an option to refinance outstanding payments to the Retirement System related to pension benefits for police officers and firefighters.

Sections 5 and 6 give local governments flexibility to pay their pension bills by January 15 instead of the current December 15 requirement.

Section 7 prohibits the cost of future benefit improvements from being funded by existing assets in the retirement systems for approximately 17 years after the benefit improvement is enacted.

Sections 8 and 9 require the Comptroller to disclose the funded status of the Retirement System on a basis that is comparable to other states and report a five-year projection of employer contribution rates.

Pension funding changes authorized in Chapter 49 of the Laws of 2003 included a lag billing process, a minimum contribution requirement, and a one-time borrowing option for a portion of the 2004-05 pension contributions. While this law made progress toward pension funding reform, the changes did not produce recurring fiscal relief. Pension costs of local governments and the State continue to rise at unreasonable levels.

· Pension contribution rates are scheduled to increase, on average, from 4.5 percent of salary in 2003-04 to 12 percent and 16.3 percent of salary in 2004-05 for the Employees’ Retirement System and the Police and Fire Retirement System, respectively. These unprecedented rate increases will require local governments and the State to pay an estimated $1.8 billion in additional pension costs for the upcoming year.

· The borrowing provisions included in Chapter 49 allow local governments and the State to defer a portion of the 2004-05 pension contributions with interest costs that could reach approximately $300 million. Comments from local government officials indicate that this option is an unattractive solution, as the required principal and interest payments will compound the problem of rising pension costs in future years.

The stated intent of Chapter 49 was, in part, “to reduce the volatility of contribution rates.” This objective has not been adequately satisfied. Accordingly, more comprehensive reforms are needed to gradually phase in higher pension contribution levels in a manner that will maintain a conservatively funded retirement system and avoid the need for expensive borrowing.

The proposals included in this bill will result in a more reasonable level of increases in employer pension costs without jeopardizing the integrity of the pension fund and retiree benefits. As a matter of principle, local governments and the State should not be encouraged to borrow for pension costs until all reasonable actuarial funding alternatives are implemented.

Under the bill, the State Comptroller is required to evaluate and consider the following options to mitigate the scheduled spike in contribution rates and improve the basis for retirement system funding:

  1. Modify the accounting method used to recognize investment experience. The current approach used to determine the actuarial value of assets includes restrictions that are not required under government accounting standards and are not used by other public retirement systems in New York State. Under this proposal, more investment assets would be counted in the calculation of pension contribution rates and employer contribution requirements would be significantly lower.
  2. Lengthen the amortization period for recent benefit improvements. The costs of significant benefit improvements approved in 2000 (e.g., the pension COLA law) can be funded over a longer period of time as allowable under government accounting standards. This option has been employed by other retirement systems to fund expensive benefit improvements more gradually. The State of Pennsylvania recently approved this same measure for its public retirement system. It may be especially appropriate to use this approach for the benefit improvements enacted in 2000, since such benefit improvements were approved with the understanding that they could be funded without additional employer costs for many years.
  3. Cap the amount pension contribution rates can increase in any given year. A more gradual schedule of increases in employer contribution requirements is both reasonable and consistent with past practice. The projected spike to 12 percent and 16.3 percent contribution rates is the result of an unprecedented stock market decline. Establishing a limit for increases in contribution rates (e.g., two percent to three percent per year) will temper the actuarial funding method while the economy stabilizes without materially affecting the pension fund. The NYS Retirement System implemented a similar solution in 1994 when public employers were facing a much smaller increase in contribution rates.
  4. Establish a reserve fund for minimum contributions. The financial strength of the Retirement System can be further improved by creating a reserve fund for surpluses that are generated from the recently enacted minimum contribution requirement. As currently constructed, the minimum contribution requirement will create a surplus of assets in years when the actuarially determined contribution rate is lower than the minimum rate. This surplus should be dedicated for the exclusive purpose of offsetting future employer contributions, as originally intended, and prohibited from being available to fund future benefit improvements.
  5. Evaluate the minimum contributions requirement. The current 4.5 percent minimum contribution requirement appears to be an arbitrary number without an actuarial basis. Retirement System funding would be improved if the Comptroller were to establish an actuarial basis for the minimum contribution requirement. A sound actuarial basis would include: periodic evaluation of the appropriate level of minimum contributions, consistent with the review of other actuarial assumptions, instead of using a fixed permanent rate; and rates that vary by retirement plan with higher rates for more expensive plans.
  6. Use actual salary experience for billing purposes. Recent experience has found the use of salary estimates to be unreliable and a contributing factor in overcharging employers for pension costs. Projected salaries used for billing in the 2002-03 fiscal year were approximately $800 million higher than actual salary costs. As a result, local governments and the State were overcharged for their pension costs. Over billing can be avoided in the future if employer contributions are based on actual salary experience instead of the current practice of using projected salaries.

In addition to addressing the need for more reasonable pension contributions, municipal officials have requested changes in law that will give them more flexibility to manage their pension costs. Accordingly, this bill:

As another reform, this bill strengthens the Retirement System by imposing strict rules on funding new benefits. Significant benefit improvements were approved in 2000 based on advice from the Retirement System that the new benefits could be funded using existing assets at no additional charge to employers for many years. The unanticipated economic downturn that occurred after 2000 resulted in a $30 billion investment loss in the Common Retirement Fund and the current spike in employer pension costs. This experience demonstrates that it is not prudent to rely on existing pension assets to justify benefit improvements because, despite expert opinion, there is no guarantee that the assets will remain at sufficient levels.

The final reform proposal requires better reporting in an effort to improve budget planning and financial disclosure. Specifically, the bill requires the Comptroller to:

Part I – Establish a State licensing fee on pistol and revolver permits and an expiration date for all gun licenses.

This bill imposes a State fee on pistol permits.

Section 400.00 of the Penal Law is amended to impose State licensing fees on pistol permits. The fee schedule is as follows: a $100 fee is imposed on new and renewal pistol or revolver licenses; a $25 fee for each permit amendment; a $100 fee on gunsmith and dealer licenses; a $25 fee on duplicate licenses; and a $25 fee on license transfers. Additionally, caps on local fees are removed and such fees will be determined by the appropriate county legislature or the New York City Council.

This bill also establishes a five-year expiration for gun licenses issued outside of New York City and Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties, where permit expiration dates already exist. All current holders of lifetime licenses will need to have their licenses certified prior to February 1, 2005. These certifications will expire on a five-year prorated basis in accordance with a schedule determined by the Superintendent of State Police.

This bill further amends the Penal Law to mandate that for the recertification of a gun license a National Instant Background Check System (NICS) search shall be conducted instead of requiring the resubmission of the applicant’s fingerprints.

Currently, local fees are authorized in statute for gun licenses. In New York City and Nassau County, local legislative bodies can establish a fee for a pistol license at any amount, whereas in counties outside of New York City and Nassau the fee must be between $3 and $10. Additional local fees for gun dealers, license amendments, duplicate licenses, and license transfers are defined. There are no current State fees.

The expiration periods are also set in statute. In New York City, licenses are valid for three years. In Nassau, Suffolk, and Westchester counties, licenses are valid for five years. In all other counties, gun licenses do not expire.

With the information acquired through the new licensing process, the State Police will be able to maintain an updated database on all licensed handguns in the State. Better tracking of handgun ownership will aid law enforcement efforts and consequently enhance public safety.

Part J – Allow localities to assess a fee up to $5 on vehicle insurance policies to fund local public safety needs.

This bill allows localities to impose a fee of up to $5 on vehicle insurance policies to fund local public safety needs.

Currently, New York State imposes a $5 fee on each insured vehicle to fund the State Police Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Account and the Motor Vehicle Theft and Insurance Fraud Prevention Fund. This bill amends the Insurance Law to allow counties and New York City to impose an additional fee of up to $5 on each insured motor vehicle. In the case of Westchester County, this additional fee is earmarked for the policing of the County’s special parkways.

A local-option fee was first proposed as part of the 2003-04 Executive Budget, but was not enacted by the Legislature.

Localities throughout the State are facing serious fiscal problems. By allowing counties to impose this fee, additional revenue could be raised to insure that public safety at the local level will not be compromised.

Part K – Increase the maximum civil penalty for unfair and deceptive business practices and false advertising.

This bill increases the maximum civil penalty associated with unfair and deceptive business practices and false advertising.

This bill increases the maximum civil penalty for engaging in unfair and deceptive practices to $5,000 per violation.

Section 350-d of the General Business Law is amended to increase the maximum civil penalty from $500 to $5,000. This civil penalty has not been changed since this section was first enacted in 1963.

Increasing the maximum civil penalty will reinforce and strengthen the State’s efforts to deter unfair and deceptive practices against consumers. New York’s penalty is the third lowest in the nation, with the remaining states ranging from $1,000 to $50,000.

Part L – Abolish the State Liquor Authority and transfer its functions to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

This bill streamlines and strengthens the oversight of the alcoholic beverage industry by eliminating the State Liquor Authority and transferring the Authority’s basic duties and functions to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Sections 1 through 9 of this bill amend provisions of the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Law and sections 10 through 13 amend provisions of the Executive Law to abolish the State Liquor Authority (SLA), transfer the responsibilities of the SLA to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control and shift the responsibilities of the 3 member SLA to a Director. Sections 14 through 21 of this bill provide for the administrative process associated with this transfer.

Article 2 of the ABC Law and Article 14 of the Executive Law establish the SLA. The SLA has the power to issue and revoke licenses for the sale of alcoholic beverages, appoint officers of the Division, establish rules and standards for the production, sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages, and hold hearings on license applications and alleged violations of the ABC Law.

Similar Article VII legislation abolishing the SLA was introduced with the 1997-98, 1999-2000 and 2003-04 Executive Budgets, but was not enacted.

This bill will streamline decision-making, focus accountability and improve service delivery at the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Part M – Extend the period when the Division of Parole can process a parole violation warrant for certain out-of-State parole violators.

This bill extends from five days to ten days the period of time that the Division of Parole is allowed for the return of out-of-state alleged parole, conditional release, and post release supervision violators to New York State.

This new proposal amends the Executive Law to require the Division of Parole to provide an alleged parole violator with notice of the time, place and purpose of a preliminary revocation hearing within ten days from the date that the parole violation warrant was formally executed when the parole violator has been taken into custody outside of New York.

The Division of Parole currently has five days to take an alleged parole violator outside of New York into custody and serve the individual with a warrant containing the alleged charges, time and place of the preliminary hearing. This five-day period has proven to be insufficient in many situations, including when a violator’s location or heightened security concerns surrounding the transport of a fugitive felon has caused complicated travel arrangements. If the Division fails to take custody of the alleged parole violator and process the charges against the violator within the prescribed five-day period, the violation warrant must be lifted and the charges dismissed.

By extending this length of time to ten days, the Division of Parole could better address the security concerns attending the transport of a fugitive felon and afford him or her the proper degree of procedural due process called for under the Executive Law. The Division of Parole’s Warrant and Transfer Unit made approximately 1,000 trips during 2002 to pick up and return alleged parole violators to New York State. The Division expends a significant amount of resources to ensure that these alleged parole violators are notified within the time constraints currently in statute.

Part N – Eliminate certain transcript requirements for Workers’ Compensation Board proceedings.

This bill eliminates the requirement for a stenographer’s transcript of every Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) legal proceeding.

This bill amends section 122 of the Workers’ Compensation Law by removing the requirement that all WCB legal proceedings be “transcribed by a stenographer in the employ of the board and certified by such stenographer to be true and correct.”

Modern recording devices and telecommunications techniques can effectively record many proceedings for future reference. Eliminating the blanket statutory requirement for stenographic transcription and permitting the Workers’ Compensation Board to determine the appropriate method for creating records of proceedings gives the Board flexibility to maximize the use of its technological infrastructure and reduce reliance on stenographers.

Part O – Increase fees paid by operators of nuclear power reactors to fund enhanced State and local emergency preparedness.

This bill increases the fee paid by nuclear electric generating facility operators to support local and State radiological emergency preparedness activities.

This bill increases the fee paid by nuclear electric generating facility operators from $550,000 to $950,0000.

Executive Law section 29-c (2b) is amended to change the annual fee per nuclear reactor from $550,000 to $950,000. The new revenue would be divided among the State and certain localities pursuant to the existing statutory formula.

A similar Article VII proposal was introduced in 2003 but not enacted. When established in 1981, this fee was set at $250,000 per reactor. The fee was increased to $550,000 per reactor in 1994.

Since the September 2001 terrorist attacks, concerns about nuclear power plants as potential terrorist targets have resulted in a dramatic increase in emergency preparedness activities and security measures by the State and localities. This bill will help State and local disaster preparedness agencies offset the costs of meeting their growing responsibilities for protecting those living or working near nuclear power facilities.

Part P – Increase the penalty for violations of New York State’s No Telemarketing Sales Call Law to conform with the Federal penalty.

This bill increases the penalty for violations of New York State’s No Telemarketing Sales Call Law to conform with the Federal penalty.

This bill increases the fine for violating the provisions of the State No Telemarketing Sales Call Law from $5,000 to $11,000.

Section 399-z, subdivision 6 of the General Business Law is amended to change the penalty for violation from $5,000 to $11,000. Chapter 547 of the Laws of 2000 originally enacted this statute, and Chapter 81 of the Laws of 2002 increased the penalty for a violation from $2,000 to $5,000.

Increasing the State’s penalty to match that of the Federal government is consistent with efforts to conform enforcement of the State’s Do Not Call Law with the Federal law. Having the same penalty will reduce the possibility of confusion on the part of the telemarketing industry or the public.

Part Q – Permit a new standard using “aggregate weight” for lab analysis of illegal drug evidence.

This bill allows more timely processing of forensic evidence and conforms the New York State Penal Law to similar laws in other states by measuring controlled substances in terms of aggregate rather than pure weight in defining quantities for various drug offense levels.

Sections 220.06, 220.09, 220.16, 220.18, 220.21, 220.34, 220.39, 220.41 and 220.43 of the Penal Law are amended to adopt appropriate aggregate weight, rather than pure weight, standards for defining quantities of controlled substances for various levels of drug offenses.

Article 220 of the Penal Law contains numerous sections that address controlled substances and specifies criminal offenses based on the weight of the drug. Currently, Article 220, depending on the particular drug and/or level of offense, utilizes a combination of “aggregate” or “pure weight” standards.

Whenever the pure weight standard is used it creates two burdensome obligations for forensic laboratories: the task to develop a scientifically valid method to quantify the drug; and the time consuming effort to perform a quantitative analysis to extract the pure drug from the substance submitted for testing. These actions are necessary to determine if the pure weight of the drug meets the statutory threshold(s) for various drug offenses.

New York is currently the only state in the nation that maintains both aggregate and pure weight standards in determining the level of drug offense. This bill eliminates the pure weight standard and implements an aggregate weight standard alone.

Adoption of a uniform aggregate weight standard will provide numerous benefits to police agencies and prosecutors without compromising the interests of persons charged with controlled substance offenses. Under the current law, laboratories cannot meet the needs of the judicial system and a number of cases are being dismissed due to backlogs at forensic labs. Adoption of an aggregate weight standard would reduce the number of dismissals and avoid the need to increase laboratory spending to process evidence in a timely manner. Implementing an aggregate weight standard would also bring New York law into conformity with the laws of other states and with Federal law.

Part R – Authorize the Consumer Protection Board to recover costs incurred while investigating complaints pertaining to the Motor Fuel Practices Act.

This bill permits the Consumer Protection Board (CPB) to recoup actual costs incurred while investigating complaints pertaining to the Motor Fuel Marketing Practices Act (MFMPA).

This bill amends section 370-i of the General Business Law to authorize the CPB to recoup its costs associated with enforcing the MFMPA. Chapter 691 of the Laws of 2003 enacted the MFMPA but did not provide funding for the additional responsibilities imposed upon the CPB.

Under this bill, when the CPB determines that a violation has occurred and reaches a settlement with the violator, that settlement may include a monetary amount to reimburse the CPB for its ordinary costs and expenses. When a settlement cannot be reached by the CPB, the matter would be referred to the Attorney General for civil action. If the Attorney General settles the matter out of court, the settlement would include an amount equal to the ordinary costs and expenses incurred by the CPB. If the Attorney General prevails in a civil action, the court may award an amount equal to the ordinary costs and expenses incurred by the CPB.

Authorizing the CPB to negotiate settlements that may include a monetary value to cover its costs will enable the CPB to better enforce compliance, especially when dealing with a recurring violator.

Part S – Establish a medical payment cap and catastrophic allowance for crime victim claims.

This bill establishes a monetary cap on medical claims by crime victims.

This bill amends the Executive Law to institute a $25,000 cap on medical payments to crime victims ($60,000 for catastrophic injuries).

Currently New York is the only state in the nation that does not limit crime victim medical benefits. The proposed medical payment cap provides adequate monetary assistance to victims while also ensuring that funding remains available to accommodate the increasing volume of crime victim claims received annually. Establishment of a $25,000 cap, along with an allowance for $60,000 in catastrophic cases, provides reasonable assurance that a victim will receive sufficient monetary assistance in the aftermath of the crime. This cap is comparable to medical caps in crime victim programs offered in other states.

Part T – Encourage intergovernmental cooperation for the statewide deployment of enhanced wireless 911 service.

This bill encourages intergovernmental cooperation for the deployment of enhanced wireless 911 (W911) service, and clarifies the costs that are eligible for funding or reimbursement.

This bill amends various sections of the County Law and the Public Authorities Law to encourage intergovernmental cooperation for the deployment of W911 service and to clarify that costs are eligible for funding or reimbursement under the $10 million Local Enhanced Wireless 911 Program and the $100 million Local Enhanced Wireless 911 Expedited Deployment Program, respectively.

Some of the major electronic equipment and software necessary to provide enhanced wireless 911 capabilities can serve more than one county and multiple public safety answering points. Counties may determine that the most expeditious and cost effective approach to deploying W911 is to agree to share costs and equipment with adjacent counties or State entities who may already have installed such equipment or who may need only modest upgrades to provide expanded services. This bill encourages counties to consider such cooperative agreements and clarifies that eligible costs by each cooperating municipality or political subdivision shall be eligible for reimbursement or grants under the State W911 funding programs.

Part U – Authorize the Superintendent of Banks to establish various assessments, fees and penalties by regulation.

This bill clarifies the authority of the Banking Superintendent to assess all persons and entities overseen by the Banking Department for the expenses of operating the Banking Department and expenses related to examinations and investigations. It further authorizes the Superintendent to prescribe, by regulation, the amount of any fee or non-criminal penalty authorized pursuant to the Banking Law.

This bill amends the Banking Law to delete references to the specific types of entities the Superintendent regulates and supervises, and adds a generic reference to any person or entity. It amends the Superintendent’s authorization to impose both a general assessment for the general operational costs of the Department and specific assessments levied upon regulated persons and entities for the expenses of examinations and investigations.

The bill repeals specific amounts of fees or penalties prescribed by existing statutes, and instead provides express authorization that each specific amount will be prescribed by regulation of the Superintendent.

The general assessment imposed on regulated individuals and entities is the method by which the Department raises revenues to fund its operations. The naming of the specific categories of regulated persons and entities in the Banking Law has resulted in certain entities not being subject to the general assessment of the Superintendent. It is appropriate to use a generic reference to any person or entity subject to the Superintendent’s regulation and supervision to insure that all regulated entities bear their fair share of the expenses of operating the Banking Department.

The setting of fees and penalties in statute leads to random and infrequent monetary adjustments to these prescribed amounts over time. As a result, the fees and penalties currently charged by the Department do not reflect market conditions. Authorizing the Banking Superintendent to customize fees and penalties by regulation, rather than statute, enhances the Department’s ability to operate more effectively in a rapidly changing environment. Thus, this bill modernizes the Banking Department by moving it toward a market-driven approach where fees reflect actual costs and penalties ensure industry compliance.

Part V – Establish a new fee to be paid by convicted sex offenders.

This bill adds a new $1,000 fee to be imposed on sexual offenders.

This bill amends the Penal Law by adding a $1,000 supplemental sex offender victim fee.

Since sexual offenses by their nature are particularly egregious and damaging to the victim and community, a separate offender fee is a reasonable requirement to mitigate the costs of extensive counseling services required by the victim and victim’s family members. The State is the payer of last resort for these intensive counseling services for victims and their families.

This bill further strengthens the link between offender accountability and the support of victim services. Collection of this fee will increase available revenue in the Criminal Justice Improvement Account to support the State’s crime victim services.

Part W – Authorize mandatory surcharges and the crime victim assistance fee to be imposed in cases where the defendant paid restitution.

This bill authorizes a mandatory surcharge and crime victim assistance fee in cases where the defendant paid restitution.

This bill repeals a provision of the Penal Law which currently exempts defendants who pay restitution from paying the mandatory surcharge ($250 for a felony, $140 for a misdemeanor and $75 for a violation) and the crime victim assistance fee ($20).

This bill further strengthens the link between offender accountability and the support of victim services by ameliorating the community costs of an offender’s crime. Under this bill a judge can require that an offender, having paid restitution, must also pay a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee.

The revenue resulting from additional mandatory surcharge and crime victim assistance fee payments to the Criminal Justice Improvement Account is important to help ensure the continuation of State support of crime victim services.

Part X – Authorize counties to assess probation fees to support county probation services.

This bill authorizes the imposition of fees (at local option) to cover the costs of probation supervision.

This bill authorizes localities to impose various probation fees. Revenue generated from this bill will provide increased support for county probation services to augment State aid.

This bill authorizes a new supervision administration probation fee, similar to the DWI administration fee already successfully levied, as well as new fees for electronic monitoring, drug treatment, and various investigation reports.

Part Y – Require a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee for defendants adjudicated as youthful offenders.

This bill requires the imposition of a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee for defendants adjudicated as youthful offenders.

This bill amends the Penal Law to impose a mandatory surcharge ($250 for a felony, $140 for a misdemeanor, $75 for a violation) and a crime victim assistance fee ($20) on youthful offenders.

This bill further strengthens the link between offender accountability and the support of victim services. The purpose of youthful offender adjudication is to protect younger defendants from accumulating public criminal records at early ages but not to sever the link between offender accountability and the harm caused by a criminal offense. This bill ensures the collection of a full range of fees from youthful offenders and increases the revenue available in the Criminal Justice Improvement Account to support crime victim services.

Part Z – Require that speeding ticket fines be based on the initial charged offense.

This bill requires that the State receive revenue from fines that result from an initial charge of a speeding violation regardless of a conviction for a lesser offense.

This bill amends section 1803 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law to require the distribution of fines based on the original charge for which the ticket was issued.

Existing law requires fine revenue to be distributed between the State General Fund and local municipalities based on the violation for which the defendant is convicted. In general, the revenue from speeding violations is dedicated to the State General Fund, while the revenue from other lower level offenses reverts to the local municipality. Current practice allows a defendant to plead to a lesser offense thereby generating revenue for the local jurisdiction regardless of the original charge or the issuing law enforcement agency.

This bill, in conjunction with other initiatives, is intended to enhance public safety by encouraging effective prosecution of Vehicle and Traffic Law violations. A portion of the revenue will be provided to district attorneys to prosecute these offenses. State and local law enforcement personnel will spend less time in court, and more time on public safety activities.

Part AA – Increase the minimum daily rate of pay for New York National Guard members on State active duty.

This bill increases the minimum daily rate of pay for New York National Guard members that are called to State Active Duty by the Governor.

Military Law, section 210 subdivision 1, is amended to increase the minimum rate of pay from $100 to $125 per day. Currently, Guard members serving on State Active Duty receive $100 per day or the same pay and allowances as are received by members of the United States armed forces, whichever is greater.

The pay rate was last changed in 2000 when the current minimum daily rate of $100 was established.

This bill recognizes the effort and sacrifice of New York National Guard members that are called to State Active Duty by the Governor for disaster response and recovery, Homeland Security activities, and other purposes.

Part BB – Accelerate the reimbursement payment for indigent legal services.

This bill changes the funding formula for a local assistance program that provides payments to counties for indigent legal services, accelerates both reimbursement to the State and financial assistance to counties for costs associated with law guardian and assigned counsel hourly rate increases enacted in 2003, and provides additional 2004-05 revenues by changing the date and formula for depositing Vehicle and Traffic Law (V&T) mandatory surcharges into the Indigent Legal Services (ILS) Fund.

Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003 increased the hourly rates paid to assigned counsel and law guardians effective January 2004. Various fees, including V&T mandatory surcharges, were increased to support the State’s costs for the rate increases and to fund a local assistance program to counties for indigent legal services. The ILS Fund was established to collect the revenue and distribute the funds at the direction of the State Comptroller. The Legislature amended the Executive proposal so that the ILS Fund would not reimburse the State or counties until April 2005, 15 months after the rate increases took affect. A funding formula based on the local percentage of total statewide spending for indigent legal services was also created.

This bill will change the funding formula to a workload-based formula developed by the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS). A workload-based formula is a more accurate reflection of local needs and provides a more equitable distribution of funds. The bill also eliminates the need for local reporting and authorizes the Commissioner of Criminal Justice Services to distribute payments to counties. DCJS has experience in administering local assistance programs and is a more appropriate agency to take on this responsibility.

Revenues collected in the ILS Fund at the end of each calendar year will be distributed in the next fiscal year. This bill provides reimbursement to the State and assistance to counties a year earlier to coincide more closely with rate increases. State reimbursement will be provided on a quarterly basis.

The bill also amends the State Finance Law to change the date and formula for the transfer of V&T mandatory surcharges into the ILS Fund.

Changing the transfer date of the V&T surcharge collections generates additional revenue for the ILS Fund in 2004-05 and makes the transfer consistent with the Justice Court Fund’s quarterly reporting system. This bill also amends the State Finance Law to more accurately reflect legislative intent for the distribution of V&T surcharges between the General Fund and the ILS Fund.

Part CC – Authorize the Division of Criminal Justice Services to implement automated photo-monitoring at work zones to reduce speeding.

This bill authorizes the Division of Criminal Justice Services to establish a program for photo-monitoring enforcement of speeding in work zones.

This bill adds a new section to the Vehicle and Traffic Law authorizing the Division of Criminal Justice Services to implement a program utilizing remote control photo-monitoring equipment for the purpose of imposing a $100 fine on the registered owners of vehicles which speed in work zones. However, registered owners found liable for violations of the provisions of this bill will not be deemed convicted as an operator, be assessed points against their drivers license, or be subject to increased automobile insurance premiums. Adjudication of documented infractions will be conducted in a manner similar to parking violations. Challenges to any fines imposed will be handled through an administrative process to be established through regulations promulgated by the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

In addition, this bill amends the Vehicle and Traffic Law to permit the Department of Motor Vehicles to deny renewal and/or suspend the registration of owners who repeatedly violate the speed limit in a work zone or refuse to pay the fine.

Existing law does not provide for the proposed program although the language of this bill is similar to that of Vehicle and Traffic Law section 1111-a (Red Light Cameras in New York City) and Public Authorities Law section 2985 (owner liability for failure to comply with toll collection regulations).

This bill is the result of a cooperative inter-agency effort by the Department of Transportation, Department of Motor Vehicles, Thruway Authority, Bridge Authority, Division of State Police and the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

This bill will make New York’s interstate roadways safer for motorists and construction personnel by using up-to-date technology to assist enforcement efforts in reducing speed in work zones. In the past, the Legislature has recognized the importance of providing additional protection to construction workers when it supported doubling the fines for speeding violations in work zones.

Part DD – Increase registration and renewal fees for student athlete agents to reflect State administrative costs.

This bill increases registration and renewal fees for student athlete agents, to partially offset State administrative costs associated with recently enacted legislation requiring their registration.

This bill amends section 899-g of General Business Law to: 1) increase from $100 to $300 the fee for the initial registration of an athlete agent; and 2) increase from $50 to $150 the fee for renewal of an athlete agent registration. The bill also amends section 899-o of General Business Law to make a technical correction.

The “athlete agents” fees were enacted as part of Chapter 642 of the Laws of 2003, which established a system for the regulation of athlete agents who contract with or contact student athletes. Athlete agents are now required to register, and periodically renew registrations, with the Department of State. This bill triples the fees associated with these new registration requirements. The increased fee revenue will offset a portion of the costs incurred by the Department of State in implementing and enforcing the new registration requirements.

Both houses of the Legislature and the Executive agreed to this tripling of registration fees prior to the Governor’s signing of the original legislation.

Part EE – Establish new filing fees for various services provided by the Public Employment Relations Board.

This bill imposes new fees for the processing of declarations of impasse, requests for fact-finding, petitions for interest arbitration and improper public employment practices brought to the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB).

This bill amends the Civil Service Law to impose a $75 fee for filing a declaration of impasse, a request for fact-finding, a petition of interest arbitration and a petition alleging improper public employer or public employee organization practices.

PERB provides several processes by which labor disputes and grievances may be resolved, receiving approximately 2,000 new cases annually. This bill generates new fee revenue that will be used to defray PERB’s costs of processing the filings.

Part FF – Clarify when the Division of Parole is responsible for reimbursing local jails for housing a presumptively released, paroled or conditionally released violator.

This bill codifies the current practice utilized by the Division of Parole for reimbursing counties that house parole violators pursuant to section 259-i(3) of the Executive Law.

This proposal amends Executive Law §259-i(3)(a)(ii) to clarify when the Division of Parole is responsible for reimbursing local jails for housing a presumptively released, paroled, or conditionally released violator. The Division of Parole currently reimburses local jails when a violator is held in the local jail on a parole warrant only.

A recent court ruling by the Supreme Court in and for Albany County in the Matter of Oswego v. N.Y.S. Division of Parole declared that the party which initially takes a parolee into custody would be responsible for the cost of housing that individual. Under current practice, the Division of Parole does not provide reimbursement to local jails when the parolee is also subject to a new local criminal charge for which bail has not been granted or for which he or she is unable to post bail. If it stands, this ruling would require the Division of Parole to reimburse local jails for housing parole violators in instances when the alleged parole violator is not held exclusively on the parole violation warrant.

Part GG – Authorize deposits, temporary loans for various funds, and bond cap changes; propose provisions relating to debt and other general fiscal management issues.

This bill provides the statutory authorization necessary for the administration of funds/accounts included in the 2004-05 Executive Budget. Specifically, it (1) authorizes temporary loans and the deposit of certain revenues to specific funds/accounts, (2) continues or extends various provisions of Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003 in relation to capital projects and certain certifications, (3) authorizes the issuance of certificates of participation, and (4) increases existing bond caps for various capital programs. The bill also provides the statutory authorization for the Office of General Services and the Division of the Budget to carry out certain administrative and programmatic functions and repeals statutory authorization relating to dormant funds.

Section 1 authorizes specific funds and accounts to receive temporary loans for the 2004-05 fiscal year.

Section 2 permanently authorizes the deposit of funds into the School Tax Relief Fund.

Section 3 authorizes reimbursement to the General Fund from the Correctional Facilities Capital Improvement Fund for costs related to capital projects.

Section 4 authorizes, in the event insufficient funds are available in the State University Income Fund, a transfer of funds between the State University Collection Fund and the State University Income Fund for the purpose of paying debt service on SUNY hospital bonds.

Section 5 amends section 98-a of the State Finance Law to authorize the State Comptroller to credit or charge interest to funds/accounts which are authorized to receive temporary loans, in consultation with the Director of the Budget.

Section 6 amends the State Finance Law to permanently authorize interfund loans within a month.

Section 7 permanently authorizes the deposit of monies to the credit of a fund and/or an account as identified by the Director of the Budget.

Section 8 permanently authorizes the availability of an appropriation for the payment of prior years’ liabilities.

Sections 9 through 11 are technical amendments that repeal the statutory authorization for the following dormant funds: Hudson River Valley Greenway Fund, Supplemental Jury Facilities Fund, and the Hudson River Park Fund.

Section 12 authorizes appropriations for various capital projects funds that are in accordance with section 93 of the State Finance Law and requires certification of certain capital spending by the State Comptroller and designated State authorities and agencies.

Sections 13 through 18 authorize the State Comptroller to deposit reimbursements for certain capital spending from new capital appropriations contained in various chapters of the laws of 1999 through 2004 into the Capital Projects Fund.

Section 19 authorizes the State Comptroller to establish a process by which monies may be used to make rebates required by Federal Tax Law to the Federal government.

Section 20 extends authorizations in section 15 of part P2 of Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003 regarding disbursements for hazardous waste site remediation projects.

Section 21 provides for the maximum amount of certificates of participation (State-supported bonds) that may be issued to finance the purchase of equipment needs which are essential to the delivery of services by various State agencies.

Sections 22 and 23 amend paragraphs (a) of subdivisions 2 and 5, respectively, of section 47-e of the Private Housing Finance Law, as amended by Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003, to increase the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Housing Finance Agency to finance certain capital projects related to housing.

Section 24 increases the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Urban Development Corporation to finance capital projects related to correctional facilities.

Section 25 amends section 1285-p of the Public Authorities Law, as added by Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003, to increase the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Environmental Facilities Corporation to finance various environmental infrastructure capital projects.

Section 26 amends Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003 to increase the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Urban Development Corporation to finance capital projects related to State facilities.

Sections 27 and 28 amend section 1680 of the Public Authorities Law to increase the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Dormitory Authority to support various SUNY and CUNY capital projects financed under the new SUNY and CUNY Five-Year Capital Investment Programs.

Section 29 amends section 1680 of the Public Authorities Law to increase the maximum amount of State-supported bonds that may be issued by the Dormitory Authority to finance a Department of Health Veterans Home in Oxford, New York.

Section 30 authorizes no more than $350 million of State-supported bonds to be issued to support the Higher Educational Facilities Capital Matching Grants Program.

Section 31 makes technical amendments to the Debt Reform Act of 2000. Consistent with the intent of the Act, these amendments clarify that short-term borrowings authorized by the State Constitution are not subject to the provisions of the Act.

Section 32 amends section 68-b of the State Finance Law to allow any State Authorized Issuer to issue Personal Income Tax Revenue Bonds for purposes authorized by the Legislature.

Section 33 adds a new subdivision to the Public Authorities Law to ensure that the State can react quickly to changing market conditions to maximize refunding savings by eliminating the need for the Public Authorities Control Board (PACB) to approve the refunding of State-supported bonds issued for projects that have already been approved by PACB.

Sections 34 through 37 make a technical amendment to expedite the refunding of outstanding SUNY Community College appropriation-backed bonds.

Section 38 makes permanent an amendment enacted by Chapter 7 of the Laws of 2003, relating to section 69-C of the State Finance Law to clarify how present value savings shall be calculated under various State-supported bonding caps as they relate to financing structures authorized by Article 5-D of the State Finance Law.

Section 39 authorizes the transfer of $10 million from the Power Authority to a State Special Revenue Fund for costs attributable to the Power for Jobs rebate extension program.

Section 40 authorizes the transfer of $13 million from the Dormitory Authority to a State Special Revenue Fund for the State’s share of the outstanding SUNY loan

Section 41 details the severability clause.

Section 42 makes the act effective immediately and provides for its full force and effect as of April 1, 2004.

State Finance Law requires statutory authorization for funds/accounts to receive temporary loans from the State Treasury. Similar provisions were enacted to implement the 2003-04 Budget and need to be extended to implement the 2004-05 Budget.

This bill is also necessary to execute a balanced Financial Plan in accordance with the 2004-05 Executive Budget. Such legislation is enacted annually to authorize loans that are budgeted in the Financial Plan but that do not have permanent statutory authorization, as well as to provide for other transactions necessary to maintain a balanced Financial Plan.

The provisions of this bill relating to the performance of necessary administrative and programmatic functions by the Division of the Budget and the Office of General Services are also enacted annually.

Part HH – Provide General Purpose Local Government Aid to cities, towns and villages.

This bill permanently authorizes the State’s revenue sharing program with local governments, sets funding for the program at the 2003-04 funding level, and continues the current schedule of payments.

This bill permanently notwithstands subdivisions 1 through 8 of section 54 of the State Finance Law – the State’s revenue sharing formula – which apportions aid on a per capita basis and also makes 8 percent of State tax revenues available under a primarily population-based formula.

Further, this bill permanently codifies section 12 of Chapter 430 of the Laws of 1997, which was repealed in 1999 when the Legislature failed to adopt a new revenue sharing formula. This section has been kept in force annually by reference in section 54 of the State Finance Law, and will now appropriately be updated and incorporated.

Existing law is subdivision 9 of section 54 of the State Finance Law, which is deemed to expire on March 31, 2004.

Part II – Authorize comprehensive mandate relief initiatives for localities.

This bill increases local government flexibility and removes long-standing, State-imposed impediments to efficient government operation.

Section 1 requires arbitration panels to consider, above all other factors, the financial ability of a local government to pay an award without increased taxation, or in the case of the State, without increased taxation or contributing to budget deficits. This will make the award process more rational and cognizant of the burdens arbitration decisions can place on local property taxpayers.

Sections 2 through 72 and sections 91 through 93 repeal multiple bidding requirements for the State, municipalities, school districts and public authorities (Wicks Law). This will give local governments the option of bidding separate contracts or awarding a single contract to a general contractor. Virtually all other states, Federal agencies and private developers have this flexibility to assure that projects are constructed in the most cost-effective and timely manner possible.

Sections 73 through 90 bring greater parity to the process under which legal claims against a public entity are resolved by:

These proposals allow municipalities to benefit from the flexibility and savings now realized by others.

Sections 94 through 98 authorize inter-municipal agreements for the joint provision of services and the sharing of real property taxes and establish a statutory process to guide officials when consolidating local governments

The proposals advanced by this bill draw heavily on legislative proposals previously introduced in the Legislature, Governor’s Program bills, and proposals advocated by local government officials and the public. This bill makes changes to the Civil Service, General Municipal, Public Officers, Labor, Education, State Finance, Public Authorities, Civil Practices Law and Rules, Public Housing, County, Environmental Conservation, and Highway laws and other unconsolidated laws.

Part JJ – Authorize the Municipal Bond Bank to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds on behalf of distressed upstate cities.

This bill authorizes the Municipal Bond Bank Agency (MBBA) to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds on behalf of distressed upstate cities.

This bill will provide distressed cities with a flexible financing mechanism to assist in balancing their budgets, moderating local property tax increases and minimizing deep reductions in essential programs during times of fiscal distress. For cities meeting the eligibility criteria, the MBBA is authorized to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds in declining amounts over three years, equal to 10, 5 and 2.5 percent of the city’s general operating fund.

New York City and cities which may have bonds issued by a financial control board are not eligible for this financing. Other cities may become eligible for these bonds by meeting two of the following criteria:

Fiscal Stability Bonds would be issued by the MBBA pursuant to a bond agreement. Before entering into the agreement, the city must submit an annual financial recovery plan that has been endorsed by the city’s legislative body. Throughout the life of the bonds, the city will periodically prepare and make public updated financial recovery plans as well as a financial assessment of the city’s progress toward fiscal stability. The financial recovery plan will outline how the city plans to restructure its programs and services over the next five years to achieve structural budget balance. The financial assessment will describe the city’s current fiscal status as well as its success in implementing the five-year financial recovery plan. If at any time during the ten-year life of the bonds, the city can exhibit two consecutive fiscal years of budget balance without extraordinary State assistance, it would no longer be subject to these reporting requirements. A city may not reapply for this program unless all original fiscal stability bonds are retired, and the city has had at least two consecutive balanced budgets.

This bill is a revised version of the Special Purpose Bond proposal introduced as part of the Governor’s 2003 mandate relief legislation, but is expanded to make this financing option available to more cities. The bill makes changes to the Public Authorities and State Finance laws.

Part KK – Propose an alternative Municipal Assistance Corporation refinancing plan.

This bill replaces the current 30-year Municipal Assistance Corporation (MAC) refinancing provision through the Local Government Assistance Corporation (LGAC) with a new 13-year MAC refinancing mechanism and revenue generating authorization for the City of New York.

This bill:

Chapter 62 of the Laws of 2003, as amended by Chapter 63 of the Laws of 2003, provides for the 30-year refinancing of MAC debt via LGAC and New York City. The validity of such obligation, however, is presently being disputed in court.

Similar provisions proposing a new MAC refinancing method were contained in the Governor’s Program Bill #37 of 2003, but were never introduced.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to support the proposed 2004-05 Financial Plan, while maintaining the City’s 2003-04 financial plan expectations with respect to relief from MAC debt service requirements. Absent the enactment of this legislation, significant financial plan disruptions could exist for the State or the City depending on the outcome of present litigation between LGAC and the City of New York.

BUDGET IMPLICATIONS:

Part A – Expand the parking ticket surcharge statewide.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget because the $15 surcharge will generate $7.5 million in new revenue for the State and an equal amount for local governments.

Part B – Merge the Crime Victims Board into the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget that anticipates $501,000 in savings resulting from the merger of the Crime Victims Board into the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

Part C – Make permanent the authorization to fund part of the State’s public safety efforts with Motor Vehicle Law enforcement fees.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which includes $51.3 million of the increased motor vehicle insurance revenue to offset the costs of the State Police’s public safety efforts.

Part D – Permit grand jury testimony by police officers to be provided by affidavit rather than requiring personal appearance.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget because it will result in $150,000 in overtime cost savings for the Division of State Police. Other State and local law enforcement agencies will also benefit through reduced overtime costs and reduced travel and lodging costs incurred in securing the testimony of witnesses from businesses.

Part E – Increase most new filing fees for alcoholic beverage licenses and permits to reflect State administrative costs.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which includes $200,000 in General Fund revenues associated with these increased fees.

Part F – Authorize the use of owner-controlled insurance by State agencies, public authorities, and municipalities.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $400,000 in General Fund savings from this proposal. The estimated General Fund savings are expected to grow to $1 million in 2005-06, $1.4 million in 2006-7 and $1.8 million in 2007-08.

Part G – Clarify the authority of the Department of Civil Service regarding the administration of the Employee Health Insurance Fund.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget.

Part H – Establish comprehensive pension reform.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive budget. If the State Comptroller implements the pension reforms included in this bill, it would maintain the integrity of the Common Retirement Fund and, at the same time, enable local governments and the State to save approximately $1.3 billion in pension costs for the upcoming fiscal year. The State’s share of this savings is approximately $500 million. Local governments and other participating employers would save approximately $800 million. Substantial additional savings would result in future years as well.

Part I – Establish a State licensing fee on pistol and revolver permits and an expiration date for all gun licenses.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget which anticipates $31 million in new State revenue from this proposal.

Part J – Allow localities to assess a fee up to $5 on vehicle insurance policies to fund local public safety needs.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to allow localities to generate up to $65 million to support law enforcement activities.

Part K – Increase the maximum civil penalty for unfair and deceptive business practices and false advertising.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-2005 Executive Budget, which assumes $500,000 in new revenues associated with this penalty increase.

Part L – Abolish the State Liquor Authority and transfer its functions to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $173,000 in General Fund savings associated with this proposal.

Part M – Extend the period when the Division of Parole can process a parole violation warrant for certain out-of-State parole violators.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $200,000 in General Fund savings associated with this proposal.

Part N – Eliminate certain transcript requirements for Workers’ Compensation Board proceedings.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $144,000 of Special Revenue-Other fund savings associated with this proposal.

Part O – Increase fees paid by operators of nuclear power reactors to fund enhanced State and local emergency preparedness.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $2.4 million in new revenues associated with this increased fee. Under the existing statutory formula, half of the revenues ($1.2 million), will go to the State Emergency Management Office for training and radiological emergency preparedness activities, with the other half of the revenues being divided among the seven counties within a 10-mile radius of a nuclear facility (Westchester, Rockland, Oswego, Wayne, Monroe, Orange and Putnam counties).

Part P – Increase the penalty for violations of New York State’s No Telemarketing Sales Call Law to conform with the Federal penalty.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $100,000 in new revenues associated with this increased fine.

Part Q – Permit a new standard using “aggregate weight” for lab analysis of illegal drug evidence.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget because implementation of aggregate weight standards will reduce Division of State Police laboratory spending by approximately $1 million.

Part R – Authorize the Consumer Protection Board to recover costs incurred while investigating complaints pertaining to the Motor Fuel Practices Act.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget that contains $160,000 for program costs.

Part S – Establish a medical payment cap and catastrophic allowance for crime victim claims.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget since it will reduce medical claim payments by $5.6 million in 2004-05 and $7.5 million in 2005-06.

Part T – Encourage intergovernmental cooperation for the statewide deployment of enhanced wireless 911 service.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget to maximize the benefits of the appropriations made for the deployment of enhanced wireless 911 services.

Part U – Authorize the Superintendent of Banks to establish various assessments, fees and penalties by regulation.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $2 million in General Fund revenues associated with revisions to these fees and penalties.

Part V – Establish a new fee to be paid by convicted sex offenders.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget and is projected to increase revenues in the Criminal Justice Improvement Account by $556,000 in 2004-05 and $1,112,000 in 2005-06.

Part W – Authorize mandatory surcharges and the crime victim assistance fee to be imposed in cases where the defendant paid restitution.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget and is projected to increase revenue in the Criminal Justice Improvement Account by $25,000 in 2004-05 and $50,000 in 2005-06.

Part X – Authorize counties to assess probation fees to support county probation services.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget and provides revenue to support local probation services. If fully implemented by all counties and New York City, an estimated $17.6 million will be generated.

Part Y – Require a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee for defendants adjudicated as youthful offenders.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget. The estimate of the revenue increase for the Criminal Justice Improvement Account is $540,000 in 2004-05 and $1,080,000 in 2005-06.

Part Z – Require that speeding ticket fines be based on the initial charged offense.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget which assumes $17.8 million in net revenue and assumes $3 million of associated General Fund savings in State Police overtime.

Part AA – Increase the minimum daily rate of pay for New York National Guard members on State active duty.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes an additional $3 million in costs.

Part BB – Accelerate the reimbursement payment for indigent legal services.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget to ensure payments to the State for costs incurred in 2004-05 for law guardian rate increases in the estimated amount of $21.2 million, and to provide approximately $9 million in accelerated fiscal relief to counties in 2004-05 for increased indigent legal services costs.

Part CC – Authorize the Division of Criminal Justice Services to implement automated photo-monitoring at work zones to reduce speeding.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $15 million in net revenue from this initiative.

Part DD – Increase registration and renewal fees for student athlete agents to reflect State administrative costs.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $7,500 in revenue associated with these new fees.

Part EE – Establish new filing fees for various services provided by the Public Employment Relations Board.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which assumes $200,000 in General Fund revenues associated with these new fees.

Part FF – Clarify when the Division of Parole is responsible for reimbursing local jails for housing a presumptively released, paroled or conditionally released violator.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to avoid approximately $2.6 million in additional Board of Prisoner costs payable to local jails.

Part GG – Authorize deposits, temporary loans for various funds, and bond cap changes; propose provisions relating to debt and other general fiscal management issues.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget. Such legislation is enacted annually to authorize loans budgeted in the Financial Plan but that do not have permanent statutory authorization, as well as to provide for other transactions necessary to maintain a balanced Financial Plan. This bill is also necessary to reimburse projected capital projects funds spending with the proceeds of bonds sold by public authorities, to maximize debt service savings from State-supported refundings, to ensure the continued tax-exempt status and interest rate of certain outstanding General Obligation and Authority Bonds, and to permit the State to carry out basic administrative functions.

Part HH – Provide General Purpose Local Government Aid to cities, towns and villages.

Absent enactment of this bill, the calculation of funding levels for unrestricted aid would revert to the method as described in permanent statute (subdivisions 1 through 8 of section 54 of the State Finance Law), which requires payments on a per capita basis, plus additional apportionments of total State tax collections.

Enactment of this bill is necessary to implement the 2004-05 Executive Budget, which includes funding for general purpose local government aid at the current year level of $781 million.

Part II – Authorize comprehensive mandate relief initiatives for localities.

This bill provides fiscal relief for local governments by promoting operating reforms that reduce costs.

Part JJ – Authorize the Municipal Bond Bank to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds on behalf of distressed upstate cities.

This bill provides an effective fiscal tool designed to help distressed upstate cities achieve recurring fiscal balance at no cost to the State. The bonds would be secured through a pledge of the cities’ unrestricted State aid.

Part KK – Propose an alternative Municipal Assistance Corporation refinancing plan.

Enactment of this bill would protect the State’s Financial Plan by removing the need for a $170 million payment to New York City in the State’s 2004-05 fiscal year. Further, this bill would subsequently reduce the State’s annual $170 million commitment from 30 years to 13 years, saving taxpayers throughout the State billions of dollars in unnecessary payments and interest.

From New York City’s budget perspective, this bill would authorize MAC to bond and distribute proceeds to New York City, keeping its current year financial plan whole, and provide sufficient assistance in each of the City’s out-years to fully support the refinanced debt.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

Part A – Expand the parking ticket surcharge statewide.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part B – Merge the Crime Victims Board into the Division of Criminal Justice Services.

The bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part C – Make permanent the authorization to fund part of the State’s public safety efforts with Motor Vehicle Law enforcement fees.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part D – Permit grand jury testimony by police officers to be provided by affidavit rather than requiring personal appearance.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part E – Increase most new filing fees for alcoholic beverage licenses and permits to reflect State administrative costs.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part F – Authorize the use of owner-controlled insurance by State agencies, public authorities, and municipalities.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part G – Clarify the authority of the Department of Civil Service regarding the administration of the Employee Health Insurance Fund.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part H – Establish comprehensive pension reform.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part I – Establish a State licensing fee on pistol and revolver permits and an expiration date for all gun licenses.

This bill takes effect 90 days after enactment.

Part J – Allow localities to assess a fee up to $5 on vehicle insurance policies to fund local public safety needs.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part K – Increase the maximum civil penalty for unfair and deceptive business practices and false advertising.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part L – Abolish the State Liquor Authority and transfer its functions to the Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part M – Extend the period when the Division of Parole can process a parole violation warrant for certain out-of-State parole violators.

This act takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part N – Eliminate certain transcript requirements for Workers’ Compensation Board proceedings.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part O – Increase fees paid by operators of nuclear power reactors to fund enhanced State and local emergency preparedness.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part P – Increase the penalty for violations of New York State’s No Telemarketing Sales Call Law to conform with the Federal penalty.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part Q – Permit a new standard using “aggregate weight” for lab analysis of illegal drug evidence.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part R – Authorize the Consumer Protection Board to recover costs incurred while investigating complaints pertaining to the Motor Fuel Practices Act.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part S – Establish a medical payment cap and catastrophic allowance for crime victim claims.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part T – Encourage intergovernmental cooperation for the statewide deployment of enhanced wireless 911 service.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part U – Authorize the Superintendent of Banks to establish various assessments, fees and penalties by regulation.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part V – Establish a new fee to be paid by convicted sex offenders.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part W – Authorize mandatory surcharges and the crime victim assistance fee to be imposed in cases where the defendant paid restitution.

This bill takes effect 180 days after enactment.

Part X – Authorize counties to assess probation fees to support county probation services.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part Y – Require a mandatory surcharge and a crime victim assistance fee for defendants adjudicated as youthful offenders.

This bill takes effect 180 days after enactment.

Part Z – Require that speeding ticket fines be based on the initial charged offense.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part AA – Increase the minimum daily rate of pay for New York National Guard members on State active duty.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part BB – Accelerate the reimbursement payment for indigent legal services.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part CC – Authorize the Division of Criminal Justice Services to implement automated photo-monitoring at work zones to reduce speeding.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part DD – Increase registration and renewal fees for student athlete agents to reflect State administrative costs.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part EE – Establish new filing fees for various services provided by the Public Employment Relations Board.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part FF – Clarify when the Division of Parole is responsible for reimbursing local jails for housing a presumptively released, paroled or conditionally released violator.

This bill takes effect immediately.

Part GG – Authorize deposits, temporary loans for various funds, and bond cap changes; propose provisions relating to debt and other general fiscal management issues.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004, except that selected provisions will take effect on other specified dates.

Part HH – Provide General Purpose Local Government Aid to cities, towns and villages.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

Part II – Authorize comprehensive mandate relief initiatives for localities.

Most provisions are effective immediately; however, section 1 shall not apply to any public arbitration panel appointed prior to the effective date of such section; sections 2 through 72, 91, 92, and 93 of this bill shall control all contracts advertised or solicited for bid on or after enactment; sections 79 through 82 shall apply to all judgments entered and all accrued claims paid on or after enactment; and provided that jurisdiction will move to the Court of Claims 180 days after enactment.

Part JJ – Authorize the Municipal Bond Bank to issue Fiscal Stability Bonds on behalf of distressed upstate cities.

This bill is effective immediately; however, for the purpose of meeting the eligibility criteria, a city is authorized to use city fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2003.

Part KK – Propose an alternative Municipal Assistance Corporation refinancing plan.

This bill takes effect April 1, 2004.

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