VILLAGE OF BRONXVILLE, NY — January 9, 2018 — January signals the enactment of many laws passed by the New York State Legislature in their 2017 session.
Over 500 bills were signed into law with a goodly number having an effect on village residents.
Though I often quote Mark Twain on less government, “No man’s life, liberty or property are safe while the legislature is in session”, when seeing 500 new laws passed. California beat us by a country mile with over 900 new laws enacted. Many were very substantive and directed to issues of great impact including opioid addiction, domestic violence, and cancer screening.
The following is a brief description of some of the more substantive bills enacted.
• Insurers are now mandated to cover the cost of the anti-overdose drug naloxone and cover treatment of substance abuse without a preauthorization requirement
• Doctors can now prescribe new and often more costly drugs for serious illnesses without first waiting for the less expensive alternatives to “fail” per most insurance company protocols.
• Individuals with emotional/drug related problems may be committed for 72 hours vs 24 hours for medical observation.
• County health departments now must report and make public opiate overdose data as well as the quantity of Narcan purchased and used.
• Requirement to post a human trafficking help hot line number at highway rest stops, airports, bus stations, emergency rooms and adult entertainment establishments. (Currently over 10 million people are are being trafficked worldwide, 1 million of which are children)
• The age of consent for marriage has been raised from 14 to 17.
• Authorize local courts where a victim of domestic violence is registered to vote to issue an order to keep such information confidential and not subject to public disclosure.
• Municipal employees are granted up to four hours of paid leave annually for cancer screening.
• Certain restaurants, organizations and arenas may stock epi-pens and use if administered by trained personnel.
• Laboratories now have an affirmative duty to seek homes for animals used in research.
• Extension of time for filing 9/11 illness claims.
• Motor vehicles must now pullover for EMT’s and volunteer firefighters who display blue or green flashing light protocol.
• Tinted windows restricting more than 30% of light transmitted through a windshield will now fail vehicle inspections.
• Courts can now charge individuals involved in alcohol related boating accidents with repeat offender status if driver had any prior DUI’s or DWI’s in any vehicle type.
• Given that 25% of inmates in New York prisons are of Hispanic descent and 10% are foreign born, translators will now be offered at all parole hearings.
• Generous tax credit for hiring veterans.
• Uber and Lyft not granted licenses to operate Upstate.
• Board of Regents must now notice their meetings at least seven days in advance.
• State agencies must post proposed or revised regulations on their websites.
• Homeowners eligible to receive insurance reduction if a graduate of a disaster preparedness course.
• Pets allowed to be buried with their owners in certain cemeteries. (Seventy three million American households have pets).
• Daily sports fantasy games reinstated as they were ruled games of skill vs illegal gambling.
• Funeral homes will now be eligible to serve beverages and “light fare” food.
• Craft beer makers receive a tax benefit for every bottle brewed.
Stay tuned as the 2018 session begins!
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Mary C. Marvin is the mayor of the Village of Bronxville, New York. Share your thoughts by directing email to firstname.lastname@example.org .