ENERGY

  • Micro-Hydro-Electric Equipment Allows residential and non-residential electric customers who install micro-hydro-electric equipment to participate in net electric energy metering with their local utility. (A.28 / S.1149-A; Passed both houses)
  • Energy Consumer Usage Study Directs the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to conduct a study of consumer behavior on energy usage and conservation. (A.42-A / S.511-A; Passed both houses)
  • Cool Roof Energy Reduction Materials Requires that newly constructed or substantially renovated state agency buildings include cool roofing materials in order to increase solar reflectance and reduce energy usage. (A.96; Passed Assembly / S.967; Government Operations)
  • Increased Energy Grant Transparency Requires the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to provide greater transparency of grants awarded through the Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standard (EEPS) program. (A.261 / S.215; Chapter 5)
  • Outdoor Lighting Information Authorizes the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to collect information about the energy efficiency and environmental impact of outdoor lighting. (A.1474 / S.4849; Passed both houses)
  • Residential Energy Records Access Requires gas and electric utility companies to make available to landlords and tenants, upon request, information concerning gas and electric charges from the prior occupants of a residential dwelling. (A.3780-A; Passed Assembly / S.1878-A; Energy and Telecommunications)
  • Utility Emergency Plans Requires electric utilities to submit annual detailed utility emergency plans to the Public Service Commission (PSC) for its review and approval. The bill aims to provide greater public scrutiny to emergency plans prepared by utilities to address the needs of utility customers during storms and other emergency situations. The bill also includes oversight measures to prevent blackouts. (A.4980; Passed Assembly / S.1083; Energy)
  • Credit Roll Over for Net Metering Customers Allows utility customers who participate in net metering to roll over credits earned for energy produced from one year to the next. (A.5521-A; Passed Assembly / S.5839; Energy and Telecommunications)
  • Remote Net Metering Permits remote net electric metering by farm and non-residential customers who operate farm waste, solar and wind electric generating devices. The bill would allow these customers to realize the cost benefits of net metering when using alternative sources of energy that operate from multiple locations. (A.6270-B / S.3407-B; Chapter 35)
  • Transmission Line Compliance Requires the Public Service Commission to determine whether a proposed electric transmission line complies with the most recent state energy plan before granting a certificate of environmental compatibility and public need. (A.7399; Passed Assembly / S.5626; Energy and Telecommunications)
  • Power NY Act of 2011 Provides a comprehensive energy policy to address power generation, conservation and environmentally safe sources of power. The bill also would establish the Article X power plant siting law, an on-bill financing mechanism for the Green Jobs-Green New York program, and directs NYSERDA to conduct identifying strategies to increase solar energy generation in New York. (A.8510 / S.5844; Chapter 388)

ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION

  • Cadmium Ban Prohibits the sale of jewelry, toys or ornaments to which cadmium has been added intentionally during product formulation or manufacturing. Media reports have linked cadmium to several health disorders including cancer and kidney disease. (A.1158; Passed Assembly / S.2729; Environmental Conservation)
  • Wetland Oversight Provides DEC with regulatory authority over freshwater wetlands of one acre or more as well as other wetlands of significant local importance. (A.3374; Passed Assembly)
  • Protecting NY's Water Resources Authorizes DEC to implement a water withdrawal permitting program to better monitor and regulate the use of the state's water resources. (A.5318-A / S.3798; Chapter 401)
  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Establishes rules and regulations that restrict greenhouse gas emissions and requires DEC to implement the new emission limits by 2050. Under the bill, current emission levels must be reduced by 80 percent. (A.5346; Passed Assembly / S.2742-A; Environmental Conservation)
  • Hydrofracking Ban Establishes a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, the drilling of natural gas or oil wells with the injection of pressurized water and chemicals into underground rock formations, until June 2012. (A.7400; Passed Assembly / S.5592; Environmental Conservation)

INSURANCE

  • New York Health Insurance Exchange Establishes the "New York Health Insurance Exchange" to comply with federal law and to make it easier and more affordable for individuals and small businesses to obtain health insurance coverage.
  • Under the bill, the Exchange would make possible the sale of qualified health and dental coverage, provide information to help consumers compare insurance plans through the Exchange and ensure that eligible individuals are enrolled in the appropriate public or private health plans. The New York Health Insurance Exchange would help reduce the approximately 2.7 million New Yorkers who are uninsured or underinsured, assist individuals with access to coverage and educate consumers. (A.8514; Passed Assembly / S.5849; Rules)
  • Health Coverage for Domestic Partner Requires commercial insurers, not-for-profit corporations and HMOs that offer individual or group policies to provide coverage for domestic partners when such coverage is requested by an employer group or individual purchasing health insurance. (A.2807; Passed Assembly)
  • Mail Order Prescriptions Requires commercial, not-for-profit, and HMO health insurance policies that provide coverage for prescription drugs to permit an enrollee to purchase mail order covered prescriptions at any network participating retail pharmacy at no additional charge to the enrollee. (A.5502-B / S.3510-B; Passed both houses)
  • Oral Chemotherapy Coverage Requires commercial, not-for-profit and HMO health insurance policies that provide coverage for prescription drugs and coverage for cancer chemotherapy treatment to provide coverage for prescribed oral chemotherapy medication. Under the bill, the insurance policy must apply the lower cost sharing amount of either the oral medication or the intravenous chemotherapy. (A.6233-B / S.3988-B; Passed both houses)
  • Health Coverage for Autism Requires commercial, not-for-profit, and HMO policies to cover the screening, diagnosis, and treatment of autism spectrum disorders. Under the legislation, insurers must provide coverage of up to $45,000 per person for applied behavior analysis claims. (A.6305-A / S.4005-A; Passed both houses) (A.8512 / S.5845; Passed both houses)
  • Fertility Prescriptions Requires commercial, not-for-profit and HMO health insurance policies that provide coverage for mail-order fertility prescription drugs to also cover fertility prescription drugs purchased at a non-mail order pharmacy without any additional cost to the insured. (A.7779 / S.5799; Passed both Houses)
  • Federal Affordable Care Act Ensures that New York State Insurance Law conforms with the federal Affordable Care Act by providing coverage to dependents up to age 26, aligning coverage for preventive care with federal guidelines and prevents copayments or deductibles from being charged for preventative care. The measure also ends the requirement for an enrollee to receive pre-authorization in order to receive emergency care and prohibits lifetime limits on essential benefits, beginning January 1, 2014. In addition, the legislation also bans annual limits on essential benefits. (A.8460 / S.5800; Chapter 219)
  • Boost Insurance Markets to Benefit New York State Stimulates insurance markets by expanding the authority of the state insurance superintendent to grant special licenses that exempt approval requirements for certain lines of commercial insurance. This legislation would encourage businesses to purchase insurance on large risks in the regulated market. (A.8464 / S.5811; Chapter 490)

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

  • Innovate NY Fund makes available federal funds to the Innovate NY Fund, the New York State Capital Access Program (CAP), and the Bonding Guarantee Assistance Program to help stimulate the development of new jobs and increase economic development activity in New York State.
  • The legislation establishes the Innovate NY Fund to leverage private sector investments and provide seed money to attract emerging technology firms, create jobs, and increase economic activity throughout the state. CAP will seek to increase access to credit for small businesses and manufacturers. The Boding Guarantee Assistance Program will provide additional financial backing to guarantee bonds to assist small business and minority-owned business enterprises with construction projects. (A.8452-A / S.5782-A; Chapter 103)
  • New York Wineries removes burdensome regulations so wineries can more effectively and efficiently process, promote and sell New York Wines. The measure will help wineries to be more competitive and versatile in the marketing of their products. (A.7828-A / S.4143-A; Chapter 221)

BANKS

  • Protect Consumers from Unscrupulous Contractors Prohibits home improvement contractors from acting on behalf of mortgage brokers in order to protect consumers from deceptive business practices. (A.1913-A / S.4038-B; Passed both houses)
  • Banking Development District Continued Extends the banking development district program for an additional five-year period, from January 1, 2012 to January 1, 2017, to ensure the availability of commercial banking services in the state's underserved communities. (A.8103-A / S.5478; Chapter 484)
  • Banking Information Availability Eliminates the references to credit rating agencies and replaces them with standards of creditworthiness which are to be established by the superintendent of the newly established Department of Financial Services. The measure also would preserve and strengthen the state charter by continuing to allow state chartered banks to engage in derivatives transactions and require that the credit risk from these transactions be taken into consideration with regard to lending limits. The bill would bring New York State into compliance with the federal Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. (A.8105 / S.5464; Chapter 182)