Scaffold Law

This antiquated law makes insurance prohibitively expensive and drives up the cost of construction in New York State

OVERVIEW

This antiquated law exposes owners and contractors to unfair strict liability, which makes insurance prohibitively expensive and ultimately drives up the cost of construction in New York State.

New York is the only state that still keeps this law on the books, costing taxpayers upwards of $785 million dollars annually.

BACKGROUND

Because of this law, New York’s general liability insurance is the highest in the nation for construction and has resulted in fewer carriers that will actually write policies in New York. Today, the situation has become so bad that getting general liability insurance has become a crisis of availability. The current standard of “absolute liability” isn’t working and must be replaced with a standard of “comparative negligence.” Under this common-sense reform, liability is apportioned by a jury, in proportion to the actual fault.

ABC Supports

  • S5695 and A2539 –This legislation would change the manner in which workers’ supplemental benefits are calculated to use the annualization methodology pursuant to the federal Davis-Bacon Act and provide that any person debarred from federal contracts due to violations of the wage requirements in the Act would similarly be debarred from being awarded New York state and local contracts. 

ABC OPPOSES

  • S3995/A5414 – This bill would provide that any person debarred from federal contracts due to violations of the wage requirements in the federal Davis-Bacon Act would similarly be debarred from being awarded New York state and local contracts. The legislation fails to recognize the inconsistency between federal Davis-Bacon Act work and New York State public jobs. S5695 and A2539 addresses those concerns and provides for a more fair approach to debarment reciprocity.

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Associated Builders and Contractors, Empire State is the voice of the merit shop in the New York construction industry.  We believe the merit shop movement is a movement for the betterment of the individual... the construction industry... and the nation.. 
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