PARK STRATEGIES NEWSLETTER NOVEMEBER 2021
Public Hearing Calendar
From the Governor
NY Requests More
ERAP Money from
Executive Orders Related to Health Care
AG Releases Additional Cuomo Evidence
AG Joins Instagram Investigation
Comptroller: Local Tax Collection Up
Comptroller Finds Inappropriate Payments for Medicaid
OCM: Hemp Regs Released
Legislative Session Approaches, COVID sticks around
There is no shortage of important issues currently impacting New York State as we enter the final weeks of the calendar year.
The Division of Budget continues its process of crafting the NYS Executive Budget, which will likely be unveiled on or prior to January 18, 2022. The Legislature has announced its tentative session calendar with 60 in-session days scheduled from January 5th to June 2nd, 2022. The Gubernatorial primary race is taking shape, the impact of increased COVID infections in various regions of upstate New York has pushed hospital capacity levels to the brink, and the state has exhausted federal rental assistance funding. And of course, the first day of winter is just around the corner (December
Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP): On November 14, 2021, the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) closed the portal for ERAP funding as total requests for assistance exceeded available federal funding for the ERAP program. New applications for ERAP are currently only being accepted in limited categories (more information here) and funding is not guaranteed. Governor Hochul has requested additional funding from the federal government, more details are in the “From the Governor” section.
COVID Continues: With the emergence of new variants and the continued spread of COVID, Governor Hochul has taken action to address hospital capacity and staffing shortages. Through Executive Order 11, Governor Hochul has empowered the NYS Department of Health to limit nonessential, non-urgent procedures in hospitals or systems with a capacity below 10% staff bed capacity. The new protocols will begin on December 3rd and will be reassessed on January 15th. Some of the media coverage related to hospital capacity issues can be found here, here, and here. With COVID continuing to spread, Erie County has reinstituted a mask mandate.
NY Governor’s Race Heats Up: With elections for statewide offices looming in November next year, the race for the Governor’s seat continues to heat up. New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams and Long Island Congressman Tom Suozzi have entered the race in addition to current Governor Kathy Hochul and New York State Attorney General Letitia James.
Governor Hochul signed 90 bills this month. Of particular interest were A6247A (PeopleStokes) / S5246A (Kennedy) relating to the assessment of the record of performance of mortgage bankers in helping to meet the needs of local communities; A2382 (Weinstein) /S153 (Thomas) enacts the “consumer fairness act”; A1935 (Perry) / S671 (Sanders) relates to modifying delinquent mortgage loans and single point of contact. A1237 (Paulin) / S1182 (Benjamin) allow business corporations, not-for-profit corporations, religious institutions, and cooperatives to hold meetings of shareholders, members, trustees, etc., via electronic communication.
Upcoming Public Hearings
~December 9th, Senate Standing Committee on Ethics and Internal Governance. Topic: To discuss New York State’s system of ethics oversight and enforcement.
~December 13th, Assembly Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities, and Commissions. Topic: Gateway Program Update.
Check here for the full list.
From the Governor:
New York State has
From the NYS Attorney General
NYS AG Releases Additional Transcripts, Exhibits, Videos from Cuomo Investigation
NYS Attorney General has released transcripts and corresponding exhibits from the investigation into sexual harassment allegations against former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. This follows the report released by independent investigators Joon H. Kim and Anne L. Clark (the NYS Assembly released its report on its impeachment investigation on November 22).
NYS AG Joins Investigation on Instagram’s Impact on Young People
NYS Attorney General Letitia James has announced she is joining a coalition of attorneys general from across the nation to investigate Meta Platforms, Inc. formerly known as Facebook. The investigation is related to potential violations of consumer protection laws concerning the social media platform promoting Instagram use to children and young adults despite knowing such use is associated with physical and mental harms.
From the NYS Comptroller
NYS Tax Collections Up
NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli announced local sales tax collections grew by 12.9% in October compared to a year ago. Collections for all localities totaled more than $1.5 billion, which is up $175 million from October 2020.
Comptroller Finds Over $100 Million in Inappropriate Medicaid Payments
NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli released three audits reporting findings of more than $100 million in improper payments made by the Department of Health (DOH) for the Medicare buy-in program, maternity care, and drug and therapy claims. Additionally, nearly $400,000 in premiums may have been paid for deceased individuals, according to the Comptroller.
From the NYS Office of Cannabis Management
Cannabis Control Board Approves Regulations for Cannabinoid Hemp Program
The New York State Cannabis Control Board approved regulations presented by the Office of Cannabis Management establishing the State’s Cannabinoid Hemp Program. The regulations create new standards for processing, manufacturing, laboratory testing, and packaging designed to regulate cannabinoid hemp products (e.g., CBD products) in New York State. The new regulations will be effective immediately, but business will have a six-month window to comply with the new testing, and packaging, and labeling requirements.
For more cannabis-related updates, see the Park Strategies, LLC Cannabis Practice Group Social Equity Newsletter.
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